Cauca climate-smart village (Colombia)

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The Cauca CSV is located in the northwest of Popayán, capital city of Cauca Department. The communities of these villages have been strengthened and empowered by the Association of Community Action Boards (JAC in Spanish) which seeks mechanisms to generate sustainability and improve the communities’ livelihoods. These communities face challenges such as the impacts of climate change and variability, with its associated impacts on productivity and yield, problems with access to water sources, and soil degradation, among others.

These communities show great enthusiasm to make their land productive, although, as they say, “the weather is not like before.” But, they have a strong desire that their children and grandchildren continue to live there. This is the main reason why they work hard to address challenges related to weather but also in relation to the social, economic, and political context of the country.


(click over the picture to learn more about each project)

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Participatory research on adaptability of bean varieties to improve food and nutrition security: The community of Cauca climate-smart village (CSV), prioritized the evaluation of improved varieties of beans as a measure of adaptation to variability and climate change, given that erratic patterns of rainfall and occasional hailstorms increase phytosanitary risks in traditional varieties. In addition, this climate-smart practice is contributing to diet diversification, improvement of families’ food and nutritional security, and can even be another future income source as surpluses are commercialized. Learn more.

Innovation, monitoring and evaluation to improve the adoption of climate-smart technologies: The project “Innovation Platform to improve adoption of climate-smart technologies for the small family farmer” (PiASAC in Spanish) seeks to encourage a process of adoption of solutions to improve the ability of small farmers to deal with
climate change and variability. The project ties in with initiatives in Honduras, through the Local Committees of Agricultural Research (CIAL in Spanish), and in Colombia with the Cauca climate-smart village (CSV) seeking to improve the capacity of

smallholder farmers to adapt to climate change and variability. Learn more.

Planning for adaptation to climate variability and change with a gender focusBased on the methodology of local adaptation plans designed by Fundación Ecohabitats and scientific support from the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), a
participatory process was carried out with the community of small producers of Cauca climate-smart village (CSV). In this process, each family analyzed its vulnerabilities to climate variability, then identified climate-smart practices that could be

applied on their farms and elaborated their local plans for adaptation to climate change and variability, considering the implementation roles of each family member. Learn more.

Gender and social inclusion activities in the climate-smart villages (CSVs) of Latin AmericaThe strategy for gender and social inclusion in CSVs seeks to close gender gaps in the rural sector and reduce rural

women’s vulnerability to climate change, through equal control of assets and resources, technologies and practices that reduce labor and encourage the participation of women and youth in decision-making. The participation of all stakeholders can also help to identify gender gaps and social and economic inequalities to be addressed. Learn more.

Estimation of greenhouse gas emissions in climate-smart villagesSmallholder farmers constitute 80% of the farms in Latin America and they are responsible for up to 67% of total regional
food production1; yet, there is limited information on the contributions of their production systems to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, or how farmers can mitigate these emissions while at the same time receiving benefits from this. The Latin American Greenhouse Gases Mitigation Network (LAMNET) seeks to tackle the challenge of a lack of reliable

information on GHG emissions from agriculture in tropical countries. Moreover, LAMNET will focus on estimating GHG emissions from different production systems of the CCAFS’ climate-smart villages (CSVs) in Latin America. Learn more.

Perception of risks on farmer’s livelihoods and barriers for adaptation to climate changeIn order to design and implement effectively adaptation strategies, it is important to understand the differences in perceptions between farmers and external stakeholders (government officials, technicians, researchers, etc.). These differences in perceptions could lead to policy and project failures if these are only developed based on the opinion of

external stakeholders. Therefore, it is crucial to understand the different perceptions between actors in the agricultural sector and farmers, who are the ones who know their territory, and at the end, are the ones that will implement these measures. This study seeks to compare perceptions of climate risks between external stakeholders and smallholder farmers in the Cauca CSV, in Colombia. Learn more.

Social appropriation of knowledge and capacity building in adaptation to climate change of rural youthCCAFS supports the initiative of Fundación Ecohabitats and its partners to incorporate the theme of climate change and gender into the formal educational processes of rural education institutions in Colombia, providing scientific knowledge for the construction of school environmental projects, as well as the strengthening of capacities in information and communication technologies (ICT) and geographic information systems (GIS) for a territorial appropriation by the children and young people of the community. Learn more.

Consolidating a network of community meteorological stations for climate risk managementThis initiative seeks to contribute to the transition towards more sustainable production systems, taking into account the climatic risks by supporting farmers of the Cauca climate-smart village (CSV) with the management of risks related to climate. To this end, low-cost meteorological stations are installed at key locations within the CSV, where producers themselves record and monitor climate data. With the historical record of this information, the productive calendars of the main crops of the zone are developed taking into account the climatic variability. This information also serves as an input for the seasonal forecasts of the Cauca’s Local Agro-climatic Committee. Learn more.

Partners working in Cauca CSV

Fundación Ecohabitats, CIAT, Universidad del Cauca, Governorate of Cauca, Corporación Autónoma Regional del Cauca (subnational environmental authority), Institución Educativa de Las Mercedes (secondary school), Asociación de Juntas de Acción Comunal del Noroccidente de Popayaán (Association of JACs), Asociación
Agropecuaria Industrial y Comercial El Danubio (farmers’s association), Asociación de Mujeres Campesinas de Los Cerrillos (women’s association), and Village’s Daycare.