Right now in Deurali across three villages, Dhabaha, Satakun and Durlunga, our NGO partners HICODEF are running farmer field schools. 93 farmers are now involved (44 men, 49 women), thirty more than last year. They are learning agriculture, water management and other climate change adaptation measures. Surbir Sthapit (HICODEF Director) sent us this outline of what is being learned as we move into spring.
The classes run using participatory techniques as much as possible. The facilitator organizes games, singing, dancing etc to make the class interesting and lively. After the class all the participants and facilitators visit demo plot to observe and carry out practical exercises such as nursery bed preparation, weeding, pest control etc. There are three technical agriculture apprentices in each location, who also attend the Farmer Field School classes. They have roles and responsibility to look after ten farmers each to apply the knowledge and skill in the farm in practical manner. The field schools are focusing on organic vegetable farming as much as possible. The farmers have gained knowledge and skill on modern agriculture techniques like polytunnel with mulching technology and use of sprinkle irrigation - a very adaptive method to climate change. Vegetables grow in the tunnel throughout the year, as it maintains optimal growing temperature.
We have been enabling climate change adaptation in Deurali for just over two years now, here are some of the outcomes in the latest project period:
- A total of 9.38 hector land are used for vegetable farming; there was no practice of vegetable cultivation here before.
- Between October 2017 and January 2018, 60,000 kg of vegetables have been produced.
- In total farmers have earned 302,555 Nepali rupees from this production.
- One farmer, Uttan Khachaha is the highest earner, with 58,400 Nepali rupees generated from sales in this period.
- Not all vegetables produced are then sold. Since October, 11,000 kg of vegetable have been consumed by households in the project areas, improving diets and overall health.
How you can help
The adaptations we are enabling in Deurali are still in their early stages and demand for farmer field schools, farming equipment and water management is growing.
Polytunnels cost around £45 and we want to provide five more of these to farmers in Deurali in 2018. A monthly donation of £3.75 will provide one Polytunnel. Simple but very effective.