Purchase for Progress: Small business owner pilot a success
AMPATH discovered early on that providing anti-retroviral drugs did not fully solve many of the HIV patients' problems. Often times patients come to the clinic malnourished or not knowing when their next meal will be; therefore, one important component of AMPATH is food and income security. Partnering with the World Food Programme (WFP), AMPATH recently completed a 5-year pilot program called Purchase for Progress (P4P) which links smallholder farmers to market demand. In a recent WFP report on the pilot program, an AMPATH success story was highlighted: Margret, an HIV/AIDS-affected smallholder farmer in the AMPATH catchment area, struggled to maintain her farm due to the effects of the illness. Food and medical treatment from AMPATH and WFP helped her to regain her strength, but she still faced many challenges in maintaining her own farm. However, help from P4P enabled her not only to start farming again, but also to increase her yields, improve the quality of her crops, and use new storage methods that allowed her to sell later in the season when prices are higher. In 2010, the members of Margret’s farmers’ organization marketed their crops to WFP for the first time. Today, Margret is able to feed her family, pay her daughter’s school fees, and invest further in her own production by purchasing seeds and fertilizer. Read the full WFP report P4P, The Story here (AMPATH featured on page 14).