The Resilient Food Systems programme is enhancing long-term sustainability and resilience for food security in sub-Saharan Africa.

The Challenge

Sub-Saharan Africa is home to 60% of the world’s remaining arable land. Yet the continent struggles to feed itself.

Agricultural intensification, overgrazing, and unsustainable agricultural practices have led to the degradation of natural resources and a rapid decline in soil fertility.

Africa’s smallholder farmers bear the brunt of negative impacts caused by land degradation. Loss of livelihoods and low agricultural yields result in chronic food insecurity, poverty, and increased vulnerability to climate change and extreme weather events.

Our Mission

Resilient Food Systems (RFS) is one of the three Integrated Approach Pilots funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF). The programme is committed to fostering sustainability and resilience for food security in sub-Saharan Africa, contributing to a paradigm shift in the continent’s agriculture: one which emphasises the importance of natural capital and ecosystem services to enhance agricultural productivity.

Led by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the five-year programme promotes a holistic approach to enhancing agricultural productivity and restoring degraded landscapes in smallholder farming systems.

Where We Work

Resilient Food Systems consists of 12 country projects and a Regional Hub, all located in the dryland regions of sub-Saharan Africa where environmental degradation and loss of ecosystem services pose an acute threat to agricultural production and food security.

Each country project is committed to tackling the drivers of environmental degradation, improving smallholder agricultural productivity, and safeguarding the natural capital that underpins food security and agricultural livelihoods in the long-term.

The country projects are connected by the Regional Hub, a cross-cutting unit whose core focus is to coordinate efforts across country projects, ensure cross-project learning and collaboration, and monitor and assess programmatic progress.

Explore our Projects Explore the Regional Hub

Explore our Knowledge Centre


The size and scale of the Resilient Food Systems programme—12 country projects across four different geographies in sub-Saharan Africa—presents a unique opportunity to gather knowledge, best practices, lessons learnt, and robust evidence from a wide range of activities, ecosystems, and stakeholders.

The Resilient Food Systems Knowledge Centre is the main platform for collecting, analysing, and sharing information generated by the programme.

Explore our Knowledge Centre

Latest News and Events

Explore our latest news and events and learn more about how RFS country project and Regional Hub teams are achieving milestones and learning important lessons across 12 different countries in sub-Saharan Africa.

Our Network of Partners

While the Global Environment Facility (GEF) provides the core grant financing for the programme, implementation is led by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) in collaboration with 12 African countries and several organizations, including GEF Implementing Agencies and Executing Partners. In keeping with the holistic vision of the programme, each partner offers a wide range of expertise, approaches, and frameworks to assist country projects in implementing activities and achieving programme-wide outcomes.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter to receive updates on stories directly from the field across all our projects, upcoming events, new resources, and more.