Mennonite Central Committee receives up to $15 million in funding for climate change work

Rebecca Murereki holds an empty pail on her head that she uses to carry cow dung to her biodigester.
Rebecca Murereki holds an empty pail on her head used to carry cow dung to her biodigester in Zimbabwe’s Mwenezi District. Murereki is a participant in a project that will be scaled up through LINCZ funding, developed with local MCC partner Score Against Poverty to empower women and develop clean energy solutions for climate change adaptation. MCC photo/Meghan Mast

Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Canada is pleased to announce a contribution from the Government of Canada in support of MCC’s work in climate change adaptation, with a focus on empowering women and girls. The contribution will provide up to $15 million over two and a half years for a project called Locally-Led Indigenous Nature-based Solutions for Climate Change Adaptation in Zimbabwe – or LINCZ.

“MCC is grateful for the contributions from the Canadian government as we continue to see vulnerable communities around the world significantly harmed by climate change,” says Rick Cober Bauman, executive director of MCC Canada. “These funds will allow MCC to increase our impact and strengthen partnerships with local innovators.

“Over the past number of years, MCC has deepened our commitment to addressing the effects of climate change, working with local partners to find effective, sustainable solutions. This project is a wonderful example of those solutions at work.”

The LINCZ project will directly benefit more than 48,000 people in three districts of Zimbabwe: Binga, Gwanda and Mwenezi. All three areas have experienced significant loss in biodiversity and ecosystems. Drought is becoming more frequent throughout the region, with food insecurity on the rise.

“The situation is dire,” says Thelma Sadzamari, MCC’s area co-director for Southern, Central Africa and Nigeria. “Many, many families don’t have enough to eat. There are no easy solutions, but we’re seeing signs of hope in places like Zimbabwe.

“From nature-based projects like reforestation, wetland rehabilitation and conservation agriculture. To training in beekeeping as an alternative source of income. To eco-friendly stoves and other energy saving technologies designed by women engineers. These local solutions have proven to be very effective in addressing the effects of climate change,” says Sadzamari. “And with the help of the funding for the LINCZ project, MCC is eager to continue and broaden this work.”

MCC will implement the project with three existing partners in Zimbabwe, scaling up climate change adaptation work that has already demonstrated impact and success: Brethren in Christ Compassionate Development Services, Kulimambobumi Training Centre and Score Against Poverty.  

The funding for the LINCZ project will also help fund research and learning around climate change adaptation. This component will be carried out in partnership with Canadian Mennonite University (CMU) in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and two academic institutions in Zimbabwe: the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) at Bindura University of Science Education.

MCC began its work in Zimbabwe in the 1980s with education programs. Over the decades, MCC’s engagement with local partners and projects has increased. Today, MCC supports initiatives in the areas of food security, nutrition, clean energy, water, sanitation and hygiene, education and peacebuilding.  

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