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Located in the mountainous tribal area of Northeast India, the India Umsning program is working with communities to increase yields, improve soil quality and reduce erosion by using the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) and Sloping Agricultural Land Technology (SALT). Other important training topics include water harvesting, kitchen gardening and livestock rearing. Participants form into Self Help Groups where they learn and support each other in saving money.
New Farming Techniques Transform Livelihoods
Turns out shyness is no reason not to succeed as a farmer.
Farming is the sole livelihood of Eras, his wife and four children. Until recently, he depended on traditional farming practices to cultivate ginger, rice, and broom: a lot of hard work with low returns. He knew he needed to improve his farming methods, and wanted to, but as a very shy person he lacked the confidence to approach anyone for advice and guidance.
Somehow, Eras found the courage to join a 40-member farmers club a couple of years ago. The group has received training from local partner NEICORD in a variety of tried-and-true techniques suited to the land and climate. These include System of Rice Intensification (SRI), Sloping Agricultural Land Technology (SALT), kitchen gardening, composting, livestock rearing, leadership and group management. Eras eagerly absorbed all this new information and put it into practice with excellent results. And, because he’s a club member, he can take advantage of any government support programs that are offered.
He began rearing pigs and cattle, switched to SRI to improve his rice yields, and started growing different seasonal vegetables. His efforts mean he can provide nutritious food for his family, and sell his surplus production for additional income. He stopped growing broom but continues to produce ginger as a more successful cash crop. All this diversification has improved the family’s standard of living.
As Eras puts it, “I am very happy with the training I have received from the program. It has greatly increased my knowledge. I just started raising pigs this year, and putting more effort into all my livestock has helped us earn more.”
India Umsning Program
Led by World Renew and Local Partner NEICORD