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dc.contributor.advisorNel, Etienne
dc.contributor.authorGoodwin, Ruth Frances
dc.identifier.citationGoodwin, R. F. (2012). The role of Faith-Based Development in Enhancing Agricultural Productivity and Responding to Poverty: A case study of ‘Foundations for Farming’ in Zimbabwe. (Thesis, Master of Arts). University of Otago. Retrieved from
dc.description.abstractSoil erosion, overgrazing and deep ploughing are all common problems for Africa's poor. Fieldwork undertaken in Zimbabwe from January-April 2010 established that some of these problems are perceived to have a spiritual origin. Rather than improving farming methods, potions and spells are often applied to improve crop yields, and ancestral beliefs often influence people's decisions and motivations. Zimbabwean average maize yields are around 300kg/hectare. Although from an Aid perspective, it is frequently assumed that donating inputs is essential for development of the poorest of the poor, evidence suggests that this may lead to a "begging-bowl‟ mentality and lack of "ownership‟. In contrast, for the last 26 years, without giving inputs, "Foundations for Farming‟ (FfF) have been training the poor to use what they have to make a profit. FfF teach a method of minimum tillage farming and counteract traditional spiritual beliefs with their openly Christian evangelical agenda. Despite their faith-based approach, the consistent agricultural results of around 3000kg/hectare have been noticed and FfF are contracted to teach their method to secular organisations such as government agricultural extension officers (AGRITEX) and field workers from the United Nation's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO). This thesis indicates that spiritual beliefs have physical consequences in agriculture. The research concludes that Zimbabwe's poor face challenges which could be lessened through effective farming practices. It concludes that Conservation Agriculture (specifically minimum tillage with mulch) is an effective farming solution having positive results. However, in Zimbabwe, traditional spiritual beliefs have negative consequences in agriculture. FfF counter this by working through the church and using Christian principles in their teaching.
dc.publisherUniversity of Otago
dc.rightsAll items in OUR Archive are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subjectFaith based development
dc.subjectminimum tillage
dc.titleThe role of Faith-Based Development in Enhancing Agricultural Productivity and Responding to Poverty: A case study of 'Foundations for Farming' in Zimbabwe.
dc.language.rfc3066en of Arts of Otago
otago.openaccessAbstract Only
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