training

Training Encouraged and Inspired Me

Like other farmers in the Bangladesh Kendua program area, Monowar says he used to grow only rice.  “We thought that rice was the only crop that we could grow, and that it would save us. But when I joined the farmer group, I learned about the importance of nutrition and decided to commit to nutrition-focused agriculture. After a workshop on kitchen gardening, I started growing vegetables along with my rice.”

Monowar has dedicated almost half of his land to the kitchen garden and has seen his family’s health improve with the variety of vegetables they now enjoy with their rice.  

But he didn’t stop there, as he was eager to learn as much as he could. “The SATHI training program also encouraged and inspired me to do environmentally-friendly agriculture,” he says.

Intrigued when he heard about how composting could improve the quality and quantity of his vegetables, Monowar collected all the necessary raw materials and invited FRB’s and World Renew’s local partner SATHI to conduct the practical training session at his house. He wanted other farmers to understand the importance of using compost and growing vegetables for a diversified diet.

In addition to vegetables commonly used in local dishes – spinach, amaranth, beans, eggplants, carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, and pumpkins – he’s started growing more unfamiliar ones to sell to a larger market. He received a loan from his farmer group’s savings and loan program to begin producing winter crops, and now grows vegetables year-round.
 
Caption: Monowar working in his kitchen garden.

Bangladesh Kendua program
Led by World Renew and Local Partner SATHI
6 communities, 1,080 households, 5,400 individuals

12/12/2017 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Slow and Steady Progress Brings Lasting Results

Even extremely challenging areas like the enormous, sparsely populated and under-served Central African Republic (CAR) can move from a food-aid mindset to one of development, with the proper encouragement and commitment. FRB and our partners in the CAR Gamboula program have been working hand in hand since 2003 to help that process along. The program helps local partner CEFA develop and strengthen the skills they need to support more communities on their road to food security.

FRB is one of a very few non-government organizations focused on development in CAR. Aid organizations tend to come in briefly, hand out food or tools, and then leave. At its agricultural training center, CEFA emphasizes empowerment and is seeing real progress as participants share what they learn when they go back home. Communities are becoming aware of the cyclical nature of dependence on outside help and agree to develop from within.

Community representatives from around the country learn a variety of sustainable farming techniques at the center. They take disease-resistant cassava or nursery-raised fruit-tree seedlings back to their communities, sharing what they have and what they know. Participants are forming cooperatives and tree nurseries and learning to depend on each other rather than wait for a handout.  

The center is bringing in nearly enough income from pressing and selling palm oil to become self- sustaining. Soon, program monies can be used to expand extension services and outreach across CAR. As more farmers use recommended practices to improve their soil and raise more food they improve their families’ diets and begin to earn incomes from farming.

The process of changing a country-wide mindset from aid to empowerment is slow, but the results are lasting.

Photo caption: CEFA training center visitors

Central African Republic Gamboula program
Led by Evangelical Covenant/Covenant World Relief and local partner CEFA
30 communities, 600 households, 3,000 individuals

11/06/2017 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Surrounded by Problems, Jogindra Finds Help and Hope

My name is Jogindra. I am 55 years old. My father died when I was young, so I lived with my elder brother and helped him in his work. He arranged my marriage when I was only 14. It was hard for me to provide for my wife, but I was always thinking about how I could improve. I decided to lease land to start farming, and was eventually able to purchase 3 kattha [about ¼ of an acre] and began growing vegetables and rice. However, I often found it difficult to run my house as smoothly as I wanted. I was tense and found it hard to deal with my daily problems.

Then, one day, I had an idea: why not look into one of the farmers’ groups organized by BICWS Nepal? Since I joined this past year, my knowledge has been built up so much. We now eat fresh vegetables, and I grow enough food to keep us well fed. We also have enough to sell some of it in the local market. I’ve made 24,000 rupees ($228) in a season, with a profit of 16,000 rupees ($152), a significant improvement over the past. I plan to lease an additional 5 kattha of land [approximately ½ acre] to increase my production of vegetables.

I am thankful and happy that this program was there to help me when I was surrounded by so many problems. I have learned a lot by attending classes and training events on how to grow my vegetables, make compost fertilizer, and protect my plants from pests through Integrated Pest Management (IPM).

Men and women farmers in FRB’s Nepal-Bhatigachh program receive training in vegetable farming, seed saving and making worm compost to fertilize their fields. In addition to rice, they have mainly been growing eggplant, cabbage, cauliflower, chili peppers, potatoes, leafy greens, tomatoes, and radish. Most of the farmers had better yields due to sufficient rains in the last six months, and sold their excess produce at their local market. They used the money for family health and education needs and to cover a variety of household expenses.

Nepal-Bhatigachh encompasses 9 communities, 2,603 households and 13,748 individuals

04/10/2017 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Co-ops Strengthen Communities in Haiti

A recent internal evaluation of FRB’s Haiti-Northwest program shows that its community cooperatives are helping their members make significant improvements in their lives and livelihoods.

In an area of the country with little government presence, farmer-run cooperatives in the Northwest and Artibonite departments of Haiti help their male and female members to build more resilient households,livelihoods and communities. The program especially focuses on women in their entrepreneurial efforts so that they have greater access to credit, training, and leadership formation opportunities.

09/26/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Heath and Nutrition in Democratic Republic of Congo

In this video, Margot Bokanga, DRC Program Manager for UMCOR, explains how the Foods Resource Bank Democratic Republic of Congo- Katanga Kamina program is addressing health and nutritional needs and spells out how a potential issue could be turned into a great strength for these communities.

09/23/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

In Uganda, Prosy moves from disability to ability

Looking back at her life before skills training, Prosy, a 23-year-old woman with a disability in her left leg, wonders where she would be if not for the food security, livelihood and entrepreneurship skills training she’s received from FRB’s Uganda-Kireka Lweza program at the Lweza Rehabilitation Center for disabled youth.

Rehabilitation Center students are disproving the widespread Ugandan belief that people with disabilities are unable to care for themselves or contribute to their communities. These students are now earning incomes, growing their own food, selling or bartering their extra production, starting small business, training others and working as consultants.

12/06/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Four Malawian Farmers Share Their Success Stories

FRB’s Malawi-Chingale program offers extension services and training for crop production, crop diversification, small-scale irrigation, land resource management, and livestock restocking to a community devastated by the 2006 food crisis and high rates of HIV/AIDS. Participants learn appropriate farming practices, and receive further instruction on the environment, health, child nutrition, HIV/AIDS education, community-based child care, and adult literacy.

Here, four farmers tell how the program has helped them improve their lives

11/25/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Beehives bring new opportunities to children in Armenia

Bees and their honey are a cornerstone of the progress of FRB’s Armenia FHSLD program. Beekeeping has been added as part of a farming operation in the local children's center which is bringing benefits, not only in nutrition but in training for life skills and teamwork. 

08/16/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

In Uganda, program farmers are well on their way to food security

One farmer’s story

Emmanuel, 47, is now closer to food security for his family thanks to context appropriate ag training and a loan of plant materials from the FRB-supported Uganda-Teso food security program. With the farming technologies he’s learned, he’s produced enough cassava and groundnuts to sell.

07/08/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

In West Africa, health & hygiene training … and a chubby baby!

I was completely amazed by the chubby baby in the arms of his mother, who sat across from me at the meeting. I don't think I've ever seen such a healthy looking baby in a village in this region before. What was this woman’s secret to having such a healthy baby, while so many are malnourished?

The baby’s mother, Esther, a participant in FRB’s West Africa 1 program, explained. "In the training I received on health I learned the importance of only giving breast milk for the first six months of a baby's life." The elders in Esther’s village had told young women that their first milk wasn't good, that they needed to throw it out and instead give their newborns water, or pass them to another woman to nurse. "Now we learned that the first milk is so important to give to our babies – that is what helps them grow strong!"

06/28/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More
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