To educate farmers about land rights and land conflict resolution, FRB’s Tanzania - Sengerema program has produced two training manuals in Swahili on the topics. Land rights and legal title to land are critical to food security: 75% of the population of 650,000 in Sengerema District alone depends on agriculture as the primary source of income and food.
The goal is for farmers to get title to their land, avoid land conflicts, and use skills learned through the program to solve land issues and protect themselves against land grabs from outside mining interests. The Tanzanian government has established a policy for granting titles but did not have the resources to educate all the farmers, so the program has stepped in.
A 15-member team comprising village leaders and elders, lawyers, NGOs, and various government ministries began reviewing land laws and procedures in January 2013. In little over a month, the program produced two manuals that explain land rights and conflict resolution in a straightforward manner.
The first run of 1072 manuals has already been used in training more than 5000 farmers in 32 villages. The manuals have generated great interest locally and across the country. For example, a nearby prison requested copies to help rehabilitate farmers being held over land disputes. The booklets will soon be made widely available by the publisher at an affordable $3 per copy, and will also be translated into English.
Other NGOs, government institutions, and stakeholders say the manuals will be of great help in expanding the national discussion and movement promoting land rights for farmers.
The Tanzania-Sengerema Program encompasses 35 communities, 971 families and 10,000 individuals