A farmer in West Africa has done something short of miraculous. He halted the desert with only a shovel! That and a firm belief to make everything better for his fellow countrymen in the dry and arid region of Burkina Faso where the tropical savanna, plagued by hot winds from the Sahara meant the flat country often experienced extreme drought, causing its people to starve more often than not.
Yacouba Sawadogo, a traditional farmer whose family has farmed the land for generations, was adamant about ensuring his three wives and 31 children had enough to eat. The land he farmed belonged to his grandfather, and the grandfather before him, and the grandfather that came even before.
Yacouba’s family were farmers for hundreds of generations.
During the early 1980’s, other farmers in the Sahel region agonized over the damaging drought that destroyed all of the region’s crops and greenery, turning farmlands into desert. A lot of Burkina Faso farmers migrated to other places to escape the ensuing hunger and poverty, but not Yacouba.
He wasn’t about to give up hope, despite the desert slowly creeping up on his crops, and he decided to use his people’s ancient soil conservation and reforestation methods to ensure his plants survived and thrived.
Based on his observations after 30 years of traveling the Sahel region, Yacouba implemented the traditional Zai technique, which involved digging holes thousands of feet deep in his fields. He filled the pits with manure, then planted seeds at a shallower depth.
Planting crops over his Zai manure holes
The manure attracted termites which consumed the organic material and excreted nutrient-rich matter that effectively fertilized plants. The channels dug by termites also helped water from the rare rains to circulate around Yacouba’s millet and sorghum plants, making them thrive better around each Zai he dug.
Two decades worth of “slowly but surely”…
Eventually, Yacouba branched out into planting trees that effectively enriched the ground water levels by holding more moisture for the surrounding soil, and with every Zai he dug, he eventually rehabilitated his 50 acres of land into rich crops and forests, conquering the desert by hundreds of miles in a matter of 20 years.
Yacouba’s rich crops
Yacouba, who couldn’t read or write, and who knew nothing of advanced farming techniques or modern gadgets, slowly reclaimed his farmlands back from the desert with nothing but his shovel, and faith that the situation could be made better.
Yacouba’s progress as seen from space.
Yacouba’s success story resonated around the world, and he was featured in the 2010 documentary, “The Man Who Stopped the Desert.”
The Zai technique is currently being taught extensively in Burkina Faso and the Sahel region, where other farmers are now maintaining a steady food supply through better crop yields, while coping well with the encroaching climate change.
Touching Photo of Last Veteran Marching Alone In Parade Goes Viral
I just want to give this guy a hug!
Originally taken by photographer Aleksandr Petrosyan and uploaded on Imgur three years ago by Imgurian Korolyeva, this touching photo of a World War II veteran marching alone in Russia’s Victory Day Parade has recently resurfaced online.
The said image has been making the rounds on various websites and on social media lately as netizens have been moved by its simple but powerful message. As of this writing, the Imgur photo has already been viewed more than 2 million times.
The unnamed Russian veteran can be seen wearing several of his medals, holding a balloon and some flowers while wiping tears away from his eye....
Amazing Transformation And Story Of An Anorexia Survivor Who Is Now A Bodybuilder.
What she has to say is just as awe-inspiring as her transformation.
Aroosha Nekonam was told by her doctor that she would need a wheelchair to get around because she was too weak and her heart might fail. Her hair was falling out and she was losing almost half of her body weight.
That was her story years ago when she was still struggling from a serious eating disorder commonly known as 'anorexia.' From being anorexic, Nekonam was able to transform and turn her life around. The 25-year-old law graduate from Aberdeen, Scotland is now a fitness instructor and competes as a bodybuilder.
For the National Eating Disorders Awareness month, she recently confessed about her previous battles in a tell-all YouTube video. Wanting to shed some light about such compelling issue, Nekonam shares her story to inspire and help those with the same condition as she had....
The Heartwarming Last Words of Brave Soldier Who Called In Airstrike To Wipe Out ISIS
A true hero indeed…
Not all heroes wear capes and spandex – some of them don military uniforms. Such as in the case of a brave man now known on the internet as the Russia ‘Rambo’ who recently sacrificed his own life to wipe out members of ISIS on his location in Syria.
Soldier Alexander Prokhorenko stayed in touch with the Russian Special Forces while he was surrounded by ISIS ‘bastards.’ At one point, he was low on ammunition as he attempted to hold off gunfire. He was told by his commander to get to safety before they sent Russian warplanes to bomb the area but his response surprised them: “conduct the air strike now.”