Livestock production is key for the pastoralist Toposa people living in Eastern South Sudan. Their animals, especially cattle, are an important source of wealth and social prestige but this also makes them unwilling to sell the cattle, locking up the potentially valuable income that could help improve their lives. A local community group – Riwoto Cooperative Society – was set up to support the local community in improving the marketing of livestock, as well as selling animal products such as milk. SNV supported them with a series of activities aimed to help strengthen the cooperative’s capability, and ensure it continues to grow in size and effectiveness. Interventions helped shift opinions of community members, which has especially impacted women who now participate in livestock marketing – once a role traditionally taken on by men.
Despite various constraints to Southern Sudan’s economic growth, there is huge potential in the agriculture, forestry and livestock sectors. Trade remained limited due to a lack of infrastructure, limited financial services, and low levels of entrepreneurial skills, but these conditions are starting to change. Gum acacia has the potential to make significant contributions to poverty alleviation in many parts of Southern Sudan, which is why SNV conducted a value chain study for various potential sub-sectors, including Gum acacia. The case describes how, together with the local Development Association Toposa, SNV mobilised local communities and collectors and formalized them into cooperative societies, strengthened their organisational capacity and supported them to negotiate favourable prices.
Could community based natural resource development and economic activities be tools for enhancing peaceful co-existence for notoriously conflicting pastoral communities? This is the question that our client, Galcholo Community Based Rehabilitation, attempted to answer through an innovative project – Gum for Peace. Together with SNV, Galcholo undertook a Natural Resource Assessment, used to inform policy formulation for the Gum Acacia sector; SNV supported Galcholo in understanding trade dynamics between local communities; and SNV organised a community training on how to harvest, dry and store Gum Acacia; and SNV helped to establish linkages with the international market.
Mogos is a pastoral community located in the semi-arid area in Southern Sudan, remote and largely inaccessible to outsiders. Toposa pastoralists depend on livestock production for their livelihoods. This case describes how SNV worked together with a development Agency working together with communities in promoting livestock production and marketing. SNV invested in capacity building, market research and establishing initial market linkages, developing local marketing strategies, and supporting governance development.