Submitted by RUAF Latin Amer... on Fri, 11/19/2010 - 10:19
Date of RUAF intervention 2005-ongoing
Introduction | Urban agriculture in Lima | Multistakeholder action planning | Products | Contact
INTRODUCTION: CITY CONTEXT
The municipality of Villa Maria del Triunfo is located at the southern outskirts of Lima and has a population of almost 360,000. Over 57 per cent of the residents live in poverty and 15 per cent of the population suffers from malnutrition, with children mainly affected. In response, the municipality started an urban agriculture programme in 1999 to improve urban food security. The authorities of Villa Maria del Triunfo incorporated urban agriculture within the city’s Integrated Development Plan (2001-2010) and created a Municipal Urban Agriculture and Environmental Protection Programme (PAU). However, this urban agriculture programme did not provide adequate guidelines for implementation since it was not based on a solid analysis of the status of agriculture in the city. Also, urban producers did not participate sufficiently in the process, which meant that their needs and priorities were not taken into account. Further, limited human and financial resources were available from the municipality for programme implementation.
To fill these gaps, the Municipality of Villa Maria del Triunfo conducted a multi-stakeholder policy formulation and action planning process from 2005 to 2007, with the support of IPES/RUAF. Action oriented research was implemented to: i) analyse the contribution of urban agriculture to household livelihoods and the urban environment in the district; ii) develop a better understanding among decision-makers and other actors of the significance of local food production and its potential impacts; iii) revise the Municipality’s urban agriculture policy; and iv) formulate a Strategic Action Plan for Urban Agriculture.
Villa Maria has poor soil quality and an annual rainfall of only 25 mm per year. Despite these difficult growing conditions, over 500 family and community gardens have been established and are supported by the urban agriculture programme. In addition, many landless families living in the city’s poor hillside settlements keep small animals for occasional sales or home consumption. The production of vegetables, birds, guinea pigs, rabbits and pigs also provides a source of food and income, which is vital to these low-income families.
URBAN AGRICULTURE IN LIMA
In Peru urbanisation is intense, especially in metropolitan Lima. Massive migration resulted in urbanisation of poverty, which in the case of Lima is concentrated in the expanding outer zones of the city. In this context of an impoverished urban-rural interface, urban agriculture is an important livelihood strategy. Despite unfavourable geographic conditions, more than 500 family and community (huertas) (plots used for gardens or small-scale farms) have been planted by community groups and schools, while another 175 hectares of vacant land are still available for agricultural production. In these (huertas) the use of agro-ecological production technologies is promoted. Just over two-thirds of the urban farmers are formerly rural women migrants, heads of household who have to maintain families with 5 or more members. Since their household incomes tend to be less than the minimum monthly salary (US$152), most of their production is used to ensure household food security. Of every 100 urban farmers, 83 produce vegetables, 52 raise small animals, 45 have fruit trees, 31 grow aromatic herbs, and 18 produce ornamental plants. Only 20 percent process their products occasionally (conserves, marmalades, jelly), and efforts to sell these products are still incipient.
MULTI STAKEHOLDER ACTION PLANNING
RUAF Cities Farming for the Future Programme (RUAF-CFF) facilitates participatory and multi-stakeholder policy formulation and action planning (MPAP) on urban agriculture in Villa Maria del Triunfo (VMT).
|Participatory and Multi-stakeholder Policy formulation and Action Planning (MPAP ) is a process of collaboration between the urban authorities with citizens, farmers, civil organisations, private sector companies and other governmental entities in the preparation, implementation and evaluation of policies and related action plans. This approach brings together major stakeholders in communication, dialogue, co-determination of issues, joint decision making, planning, policy-making and implementation of projects. The main output of a MPAP is the joint development of a City Strategic Agenda on urban agriculture.|
The Municipality of VMT initiated in 2005 the formulation of a policy on urban agriculture, supported by RUAF-CFF, in order to encourage urban agriculture in the district, and to design, plan and implement strategic actions stemming from those policies.
A multi-stakeholder process was developed under the Municipality’s direction. After a period of awareness-raising, training and exchanges with municipal decision-makers, in 2006, an assessment was carried out of urban agriculture land use and practices. Following this assessment, a strategy document was produced, summarising the main limitations and potentials for promoting urban agriculture. In 2007, an Urban Agriculture Forum was established, with the active participation of urban farmers and 20 other institutions (local government, NGOs, community organisations, universities, funding agencies, and private companies). To bolster participation in the Forum, and in other decision-making bodies in the city, a local network of urban farmers was also set up.
The Forum developed Public Policy Guidelines and a Strategic Urban Agriculture Plan for the 2007-2011 period, which are now being implemented by the members of the Forum.
City Strategic Agenda
The City Strategic Agenda on urban agriculture (CSAU) is an operational tool designed in a participatory way by the Urban Agriculture Forum that proposes a joint vision and practical solutions to the needs and priority issues identified by the Forum. The Agenda has been recognised and adopted by the local government. It is being implemented with local, national and international resources contributed by the local government and different members of the Forum.
The CSAU seeks to:
- Build citizen awareness about the benefits of urban agriculture
- Build technical and management capacity among the urban farmers
- Facilitate access to and the rational use of water in urban agriculture in the district
- Boost local production as well as local and national commercialisation
- Strengthen the institutional and regulatory frameworks needed to develop urban agriculture in the district
- Facilitate access to information and promote financing and investment for urban agriculture in the district.
The CSAU will continue to guide the work in VMT on urban agriculture, supported by RUAF under the From Seed to Table programme (2009-2010).
As part of the CSAU, the project “Productive Learning Centre” was formulated in 2006, to develop a strategy for the promotion of crop production for the market in community gardens. Lessons learned in this project were used to motivate the Forum members in the further pursuit of their activities. The project was implemented and financed by members of the Forum: IPES/RUAF, the Municipality of Villa Maria del Triunfo, the Peru Energy Network, and FAO Peru.
The Centre is run by 12 families that benefit from the complementary family incomes generated by selling products and the savings made possible by the availability of farm products for household consumption. It is located in an area under power lines. The families were granted permission to use this land through a use agreement provided by the Energy Network. The Centre covers 4000 m2. It includes crop compost areas, seed incubators and vegetable patches (including aromatic herbs, medicinal plants, lettuce, spinach, beets, peppers, tomatoes, cauliflower and onion) and a research and training area which has made it possible to improve farming techniques in dry-land areas. The farm combines family work on plots with collective activities, like managing the training areas, cleaning and maintenance.
- Quantitative and qualitative information was gathered on the status of urban agriculture and a policy narrative published.
- Public Policy Guidelines and the 2007-2011 Strategic Plan on Urban Agriculture were developed and adopted by the municipality.
- A multi-stakeholder platform, the Villa Maria del Triunfo Urban Agriculture Forum, has been created and consolidated.
- An Urban Farmers Network of Villa Maria del Triunfo, bringing together all local farmers, has been formed and is now legally recognised by the local government (Mayoral Resolution No. 060-2008 / MVMT).
- A Framework Ordinance was approved recognising Urban Agriculture as a legal activity in the district (Council Resolution No. 021-2007/MVMT).
- The “Villa Maria del Triunfo Urban Agriculture Week” was established and will be held each year.
- By 2007, 75% of the Plan’s short-term strategic actions were implemented (Year 1), and approximately US$195,000 of funding has been mobilised.
- The Urban Agriculture Forum is an ongoing space for planning and action that involves various local stakeholders, and facilitates the input of financial and human resources.
- Encouraging urban farmers to get organised (in this case through the Forum and the Network of Urban Farmers) and building their lobbying capacities is essential for developing participatory and inclusive decision-making processes.
- The creation and strengthening of such platforms and networks ensures the inclusion of urban agriculture in the policy agenda of the local government. The change in municipal authorities that occurred in 2006 did not result in a setback in urban agriculture development, thanks to the awareness-raising and lobbying activities carried out by the Network and the Forum.
- Demonstration projects make it possible to generate new knowledge as well as validate and adjust intervention strategies and methodologies that can then be replicated at a larger scale.
Villa Maria Planting for Life
This video shows the process fostered by IPES / RUAF in Villa Maria del Triunfo, Lima (Peru), in the framework of the Cities Farming for the Future programme in actively involving local governance, NGO's, social organisations and groups of urban farmers.
Community gardens in Villa Maria del Triunfo (Lima-Peru)
Video on community gardens developed by IPES in Villa Maria del Triunfo, produced by the television program "Somos Agro" of Peru TV in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture.
Agriculture in the City, Villa Maria del Triunfo (Lima-Peru)
Episode of "Haciendo Peru" about organic gardens and the raising of small animals implemented in Villa Maria del Triunfo by various institutions.
Villa Maria del Triunfo
Ms. Noemí Soto
Coordinadora local del Proceso Multiactoral
Lima - Perú
Regional Coordination of the RUAF Cities Farming for the Future Programme
Gunther Merzthal, RUAF-CFF Regional Coordinator for Latin America and the Caribbean
IPES, Promoción del Desarrollo Sostenible
Calle Audiencia 194 San Isidro, Lima 27 - Peru
Telefax (51-1)440-6099, 421-9722, 421-6684
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