Agriculture Demonstration

Working in partnership with Jesse Shanks, a missionary who shares our beliefs about how to make an “impact that lasts,” and who has deep-rooted relationships in local communities in the West African nation of Togo, we are providing training in sustainable conservation agriculture techniques.

Jesse and his family is passing on their training to a small group of Togolese farmers who have expressed a desire to achieve improved yields despite degraded soils and limited rainfall. The training empowers farmers by offering alternative practices for agricultural production and resource management to people who want to do their part to increase food security and household income for their families. Because the methods rely on freely available resources from nature, such as mulch and manure, these techniques are highly sustainable and dependent only on the will of the farmers themselves.

Current Needs

We pray for prosperous demonstration plots, and for farmers to be open to trying methods that are new to them.

Most Recent Updates


Plans for agriculture training

Jesse Shanks and his community have successfully installed a deep bore well (in partnership with another nonprofit) along with a solar pump. This pump will provide water for a theology school and the surrounding community. Jesse plans to implement agriculture training at the school and hopes the well will provide water for irrigation once that training begins. We ask for your prayers for this partnership. It is slow in its development, but we are willing to be patient and see how Just Hope can help empower the people of Togo.

Farming Challenges

According to early reports from Jesse’s recent demonstration plot, bugs destroyed some of the bean crops, and some of the corn did not germinate properly. Jesse thinks he may have purchased some bad corn seeds. The quality of seeds is a constant problem faced by farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa and is addressed in David’s training with the practice of saving seeds from every harvest. By saving back some of their seeds and storing them properly, farmers always know the quality and freshness of their seeds.

Conservation Agriculture Demonstration Well Received

  • During classroom training, Jesse placed the farmers in groups to discuss agriculture challenges and methods for overcoming the challenges.
Jesse led sustainable conversation agriculture trainings last week with 27 farmers that represented 11 communities where he is currently providing disciple training. He feels strongly that it was well received and we are hopeful these farmers will return home and do a demonstration in their own area. To improve the rate of adoption and build credibility, each village had at least 2 people in attendance so they can work together on the method. Each village was provided a tool kit and seeds to begin their on their own when they return home.

Planning Next Steps

We are in conversation with Jesse about next steps, which may include a two-day training that ends with participants receiving a starter kit of rope, seeds, manure, and other resources to start their own demonstration plot.

Jesse Begins 3-Month Teaching Period

Jesse will begin a three-month period of teaching sustainable conservation agriculture principles this month. The rainy season will begin in about three months, so the timing of this training is such that people will have strong knowledge of preparing their fields, planting and mulching in time to take advantage of the rainfall.