LAC 2014 United Methodist Church Agriculture Program UMCAP

United Methodist Church Agriculture Program UMCAP

Introduction: We greet you in the precious name of our Lord Jesus Christ, while we make a brief report of our activities to this Session. Our presentation is short, and we think it is understandable in that our vision, hope and aspiration have not been fulfilled, simply because of the lack of financial resources.

Our Church is endowed with abundant resources, land and trained capital. Regrettably, we are not able to adequately tap those resources.

According to a baseline survey, the LAC has more than 7,000 acres of farm land across the country within the 21 districts. What can we do about this? There is need to invest in agriculture, which is the mainstay of our economy.  Unless the LAC begins to invest, our financial situation will continue to worsen as donors have already begun to cut down their support.

In spite of negligible budgetary support from the LAC, our vision for financial sustainability still remains the following:

  • Tree crop development (rubber, oil palm, cocoa and coffee);
  • Livestock (animal) production
  • Animal feed production (corn)
  • Rehabilitation of our existing infrastructures in DeCoursey and White Plains
  •  Development of 400 acres in DeCoursey and another 150 acres in White Plains to sustain the LAC Budget.
  • Ensuring that the 400 acres purchased by the UMC Agriculture Program in Nimba from Dr. Golafala and the 525 acres in DeCoursey be surveyed without delay.

Achievements:

  •  In spite of budgetary constraints, we were able to plant 7.5 acres of rubber during the period under review and planted 2 acres of cassava in White Plains.
  •  At White Plains, we are again undertaking corn production to produce animal feed, in addition to planting pineapple and plantain.

Constraints/Challenges:

  • No transportation for the Department to visit project sites and the Districts.
  • The care-takers of the 30 acres of rubber farm planted in DeCoursey are yet to be compensated because they are not on payroll.
  • Budgetary allotments are yet to be disbursed.

 Recommendation or Way Forward:

  • To ensure maximum productivity for cultivating at least 50% of our more than 2,800 hectares or 7,000 acres of farmland for this Conference.
  • Embark on livestock production with emphasis on pig, poultry, cattle and inland fish farming at local, districts and conference levels by the year 2016.

Gratitude and Conclusion: We are grateful to God for enabling us to carry out the ministry in which He has empowered us to serve, in spite of serious challenges. We are also thankful to our Bishop and all our supporting agencies, especially the

  • West Virginia Conference (our major donor),
  • Bethany United Methodist Church, Ohio, USA,
  • Centenary UMC, Charleston USA,
  • New York, St. Pauls UMC,
  • Shelly Krueger and Tracy Evans

and, of course, our Conference Business Office and the Connectional Ministry Director, Rev. George D. Wilson, Jr. Our gratitude also goes to our volunteer staff at DeCoursey and White Plains.

Respectfully submitted, James G. Innis, Sr., Director-UMCAP

Approved: Bro. Curtis Findley, Chairperson, Agriculture Committee