About a quarter of the world’s population survives as subsistence agriculturalists, farming only what their families can consume. This kind of hand-to-mouth living leaves communities vulnerable to the shocks and calamities associated with climate change and provides little opportunity for future generations to exit the cycle of poverty.

Last December I spent a few days in the Indian state of Bihar to document stories of women who participate in livelihood and agriculture programs by Lutheran World Relief. By providing farmers access to finance through village savings groups, training on the use of improved farming equipment, and the introduction of off-season crops and improved seed varieties, families can begin to move beyond survival and further focus on the health, nutrition, education and long term wellbeing of their families.

Focusing on an often neglected and disadvantaged sector of society, Lutheran’s agriculture programs in Bihar seek to intervene directly in the lives of women. Take a second to view two of the video stories shown here I produced during my time in Bihar.