Global Seed Grant Activity Board


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[HRDF] Sustainable Agriculture and food security through Promote Community based Organic Farming Practice for their Food Secur
Introduction Human Resource Development Foundation (HRDF) has committed to carry out 5 months project titled Sustainable Agriculture and food security through Promoting Community based Organic Farming Practices with the support of Korea SHE Foundation for the food security and Economic Stability of rural women farmers at HRDF target areas in Chengalpattu District, Tamilnadu, INDIA. Based on this, HRDF has implemented 2 key activities, village level orientation meetings and capacity building training on organic farming for rural women farmers. The brief report for the activities are as follows.   2. Village level orientation meetings HRDF has conducted 3 one day village level orientation meetings for strengthening the women organic farmers groups in 3 villages. These orientation meetings were facilitated by the program coordinators of HRDF. 120 marginalized women farmers participated in these meetings. The women farmers were sensitized on the project concept, implementation process, role of the project beneficiaries, importance of organic farming and its basic inputs and collective farming system. Capacity building training for rural women farmers on organic farming HRDF has conducted 2 days training for rural women farmers on sustainable organic farming practices at Anoor village, Thriukazhukundram Taluk. 40 women farmers, HRDF staff and resource persons participated in the training. Objectives of the training To promote the skills of rural women on organic farming To encourage sustainable organic farming practices To create awareness on protecting natural resources and environment at rural area. To promote collective farming among rural women. Mr. Subbu – an organic farming scientist, Mr. Dayalan – Director of HRDF, Ms. Jegadeswari, organic farming trainer, Sivasakthi  - Trainer cum program coordinator of HRDF gave their valuable inputs in the training on  various aspects of organic farming as follows Organic farming and the development of rural women Soil fertility and seed processing procedures Water management and seasonal cropping Preparation and application of organic crop tonics, nature manure and organic pesticides Intercrop and multi cropping methods The trainers clearly explained the importance and benefits of organic farming. Particularly the women farmers were clearly taught on the importance of soil fertility, how to increase the soil fertility by ploughing the land using naturally available manure such humus leaves, cattle dung, green manure, alluvial soil, vermin compost etc., summer ploughing, soil treatment and soil rotation systems were also taught. Moreover the participants were practically taught on preparation of nature crop growth tonics and organic pest control liquids by direct demonstration. They taught on the preparation of Panchakaviya, Amirthakaraisal, fish acid solution, ginger-garlic-chilly solution, Themorkaraisal, Jeevamirtham which helps to good germinability good growth and yield of crops and control the pest attacks also improve the soil fertility. The beneficiaries were practically taught on Seed processing is one of the most important processes in organic farming. Processing of seeds helps to good growth, good yield, nutritious of crops. There area various types of seed processing’s are followed in organic farming. Collecting of indegeneious country seeds and process them using salt water liquid solution, poanchakavya mixture with ingredient of dung and urine of  cow and goat, Banana, curd, country sugar. The seeds should be soaked in the solutions for 24 hours. The women farmers were sensitized on water management in farming. They were explained on Micro irrigation, spray irrigation, sprinkler irrigation systems which are very much useful in organic farming which takes less usage of irrigation water and avoid water wastage and it helps to bring the water directly to the crop roots. All the participants were encouraged to farm home vegetable garden at their residents and the process for farming home vegetable garden was taught to them. Tomato, Bhindi, egg plant, Chilly, beans and Lettuce are suggested for home vegetable garden. Training materials (Educational materials) on organic farming were prepared and provided to the women farmers for easy learning. Particularly the educational posters on preparation of natural manure, crop growth tonics, organic pest control liquids, vermi compost, water management systems, seeds processing and methods of water conservation irrigation systems. This two and half month period project implementation has made the project women farmers to have clear understanding on organic farming systems and its values. And they have been equipped with knowledge and practical skills to involve in organic farming which will lead them to a sustainable organic farming practices in their respective villages.
[Green] Sustainable Agriculture in Rain-fed Lands of Women Farmers
Project description Problems to be solved: The project area of the proposed project is hot and dry. Hence, the small and marginal farmers used to cultivate their lands with indigenous millet and paddy varieties which are drought resistant and quite resilient to a variety of agro-climatic adversities. However, the introduction of Green Revolution has changed the scenario upside down. The farmers have started depending upon hybrid seeds, chemical fertilizers, pesticides and insecticides which resulted in the degradation of their lands. In addition, the emerging climate change scenario has affected their cultivation process resulting in loss of income, indebtedness and the women have lost their precious assets. Project purpose: Therefore, GREEN having consultations with women farmers decided to bring back the traditional farming practices with indigenous crop varieties as a solution to address the above-mentioned problems. The basic idea is to involve women farmers in traditional farming with restoration of native livestock system. The targeted women farmers would be trained to traditional paddy and millet farming practices and produce and use low cost environment-friendly inputs and repellants with return of women’s role in the decision-making process on cropping pattern and conservation of native seed and livestock through effective management techniques. Planned Activities: So as to reach our project purpose, we have decided to implement the following activities with the active participation of 100 women farmers selected from 500 women Self Help Groups having a total membership of more than 6,000 women members. The activities include: Orientation to women farmers Capacity building / Intensive Training to Women Farmers Training on gender and agriculture Land and Water resource management Integrated livestock management Intercropping System Crop production/ protection techniques Filed Demonstration on Crop protection methods Training on Value Addition and food processing Marketing Establishment of village level seed bank and agro service centre Establishment of farm level vermicomposting unit Livelihood support for women farmers : Providing inputs for effective land management and water conservation indigenous paddy for 100 acres of Paddy, 50 acres of vegetables, 50 acres of Millets and cultivation of fodder Livelihood support to landless women farmers: Supporting Landless women farmers through Marketing, and Providing Milch Animal through Bank loan Providing Technical Guidance and Exposure visit to pioneer farmers field Linkages with government departments Advocacy and lobbying for policy changes to promote indigenous paddy cultivation and millet cultivation, reorganization of women as a farmer and millet Formation of women farmers collective / Producers Association     2. Project progress up to now Selection Criteria: As reported earlier, we selected 115 women farmers with few fixed criteria. The criteria included (1) ownership of a minimum of one acre of farmland, (2) experience in dry land farming a minimum of 5 years, (3) a member of a women SHG, and, (4) a minimum educational qualification of reading and writing the alphabets. With these criteria we also selected 50 landless women agricultural laborers excepting the first criteria of land ownership since they are landless. The Team members selected the beneficiaries in their respective 10 villages during the first week of June, 2020 for the purposes of implementing the proposed project. Orientation Program: As planned, we organized an orientation training for women farmers in June 18 to 25, 2020. It was a one-day program spread over a period of five days held in five villages covering 165 women participants (115 women farmers and 50 landless agricultural women laborers) from 10 villages. The purpose of the orientation program was to make the women beneficiaries aware of the objectives and the key components of the proposed project. The program included description of the basic idea of the entire program with an introductory session. It was followed by self-introduction by respective participants informing about their name, village, occupation, experience in farming, family, etc. Our Team members headed by P.S. Bose also participated in the orientation program as resource persons. The other Team members are J. Senthil Kumar, Mutheeswaran, Kannan, and Ms. T. Ananthi. The team members explained the goals and objectives of the program, the context, the contents, proposed activities, time plan, and the expected results. The program was intercepted with input sessions, plenary sessions, group discussions, report presentations, and a concluding session at the end. Intensive Training Process: We started the intensive training program involving 115 women farmers. P.S. Bose, the leader, and J. Senthil Kumar, the Consultant resourced the training process. This intensive training is an on-going training process. It is divided into two sessions – (1) theoretical sessions and (2) practical sessions. During the theoretical sessions, so far, we have covered topics like (1) Training on gender and agriculture, (2) Land and Water resource management, (3) Integrated livestock management, and (4) Intercropping System, (4) Crop production/ protection techniques, and, (5) Field Demonstration on Crop protection methods. We adopted the same training methodology as in the Orientation Program to train the participants during the theoretical sessions. Mr. Mutheeswaran, Mr. Kannan, and Ms. T. Ananthi also trained the participants on and off the fields. For the purposes of practical training on intensive farming based on traditional farming practices, we engaged the selected women farmers in their respective rain fed lands amounting to approximately 225 acres. They started the practical training first by preparing their lands with tillers and bullocks. Since our project area has a good monsoon from the usual South West monsoon starting from June, every year, we have a series of ploughing activities during the months of June and July. Soon after the tilling process, their first priority was the selection of seeds and improving the fertility of the soil. Hence, we involved them in establishing Seed Banks and vermicomposting units. Establishment of Village level Seed Banks:  During the reporting period of June to August, with the active participation of beneficiaries, we were able to procure 2 indigenous paddy varieties, viz., Mapillai Samba and Poongar and 2 minor millet varieties, viz., Barnyard millet and Little millet from an Organic Farmer Producer Company located in Pudukkottai district. So as to store and distribute the seeds to the participants, we involved women from 5 villages to set up 5 Seed Banks in their villages in July, 2020. These Seed Banks distributed seeds to women farmers as per their requirements at free of cost in August, 2020. The beneficiaries who received the seeds were expected to pay back the same seeds double the size soon after completing their harvest successfully. With this understanding, the Seeds Banks were established and seeds were distributed. This activity was coordinated by Team member Mr. Mutheeswaran. Establishment of Vermicomposting Units: Similarly, we established 10 vermicomposting beds in ten villages. During the composting process, we involved the trainee participants to educate them about the vermicomposting process. The participants collected the green leaves during the month of June and August and put them into the beds for mulching. During the month of July and August, we involved them in stirring the mulched manure and poured cow dung into bed on a layer basis. We also introduced earthworms into the beds. Mr. Kannan, one of the team members, coordinated the program. During the month of August, the ten beds supplied 200 bags of vermicomposting manure. All the manure were supplied to women farmers and they in turn spread the manure across their rain fed lands. Livelihood support for women farmers: We involved women farmers in dividing their lands as different sections for the cultivation of paddy, vegetables, millets, and fodder varieties. These activities were held during June, July and August. It also included training them on livestock development and management. We negotiated with local banks, arranged loans and distributed loans to 20 women farmers to buy goats for rearing. Ms. T. Ananthi, the trainer, coordinated this activity. Livelihood support to landless women farmers: During the month of July and August, we arranged for bank loans to 50 women to buy goats and set up poultry farms. We also arranged a training program on livestock development and management inviting the local veterinary doctor. Exposure Visit: We organized an exposure visit to a biotech farm called as RK Biotech Farm situated in one of our target villages, viz., Odaipatti. In the month of July 2020, we organized a program taking 25 women farmers to visit and to learn the different activities carried out in this farm. Ms. T. Ananthi, the trainer, coordinated this activity. Linkages with government departments: So far we have established linkages with 5 commercial banks, departments of agriculture, horticulture, and veterinary services. We are utilizing their services for the intensive farming practices by women farmers. Now women farmers are approaching the officials of these departments for subsidies and other benefits offered by both the central and state governments. Advocacy and lobbying: We have invited key farmers, politicians, intellectuals, professors, teaching faculty members from nearby agricultural college as part of our efforts to promote advocacy and lobbying for policy changes to promote indigenous paddy cultivation and millet cultivation, and reorganization of women as a farmer. This activity was carried out during the month of August, 2020 coordinated by S. Bose, the Team leader.     3. Project plan forward In addition to continuing the above activities as processes during September and October, 2020, we look forward to undertake training on Value Addition and food processing, and Marketing and initiation of formation and registration of a Farmer Producer Company during September and October, 2020. We have noticeable improvements in terms of acquisition of organic farming practices, skills, preparation of low cost inputs, selection of indigenous seeds, establishment of Seed Banks, vermicomposting units, livelihood support to women farmers, exposure visit, linkages with government departments and commercial banks,  and advocacy activities for policy changes during the last three months of project implementation. We expect to continue the same activities during the rest of the project period, including training on value addition and marketing during September, 2020 and initiating the process of formation and registration of a Women Farmers’ Producer Company during the month of October.     4. Photos We have enclosed 10 photos of 2 to 10 MB size. While taking photos, we got the permission of concerned persons through writing and they gave us the permission to use them and publish them in appropriate forums.
[Big Trees Project] Development of educational material and training program for urban tree care professionals in Thailand
1. Project description Thailand is blessed with a tropical climate where trees are active all year round, but our country seriously lacks knowledge and professionals to take care of trees. That is why urban trees are damaged or killed. If properly maintained, they could actually live much longer to help take care of urban dwellers’ health. Thai tree care professionals and volunteers need to continue developing our knowledge and skills using digital format and essential field training when possible. Our goal is to produce material in Thai, in text and visual digital formats, which will continue to be useful in the future even when covid-19 is over. The material can be used both online and for in-person training to improve urban tree care standards in Thailand. 2. Project progress up to now - June: We developed and produced the following content and media Principles of urban tree care (Prof.Decha Boonkham) • Script development • Production • Broadcast • In-person training for city staff and volunteers - How to prune a tree (Thai Arboriculture Association) • Clip production • Broadcast • In-person training - Tree risk assessment (Thai Arboriculture Association) • Training material in print form • In-person training for tree care staff • Shooting of tree risk assessment to be used in digital form later -Glossary of arboriculture terms (translation committee) • Translation committee formed, consisting of professional translators, arborists, landscape architects and landscape technology specialists • Permission granted by International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) to translate the glossary into Thai • MOU signed with ISA - July: How to make compost / fertilizer from food waste (By our partner "My City Farm" on Facebook) • Content development • Production • Online release via Facebook (for general public) - How to plant a tree (infographic) - draft Root management • Permission granted by International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) to translate into Thai • First draft of translation of text on Root Management by ISA • Designer of infographic briefed and working on first draft - Glossary of arboriculture terms (translation committee) • First draft of Translation completed, being reviewed   3. Project plan forward August: "How to plant a tree" infographic finalized Tree risk assessment - video production Tree pruning and climbing - video production Root management - translation and infographic finalized Urban Tree Care Guidelines - translated and compiled September Tree pruning, climbing - video broadcast Root management - infographic publicized Seminar on Urban Tree Care Guidelines in Thai for partners and city staff Glossary of Arboriculture Terms publicized by Thai Arboriculture Association October Digital content - release and assessment by participants Translated texts - publication and assessment Any improvements, cautions, and expectations for future activities • For the remaining time in this project, we should try to improve on project coordination, so that it moves faster, make the digital releases more widely publicized and also have regular meetings with our team so we work more efficiently • Also, the team should practice more on their digital production skills, so their finished work is of better quality and more interesting 4. Photos
I: PROJECT STATUS “Enhancing urban food security through sustainable agri-business and youth empowerment” This intervention is aimed at changing the negative mindset among young people towards agriculture a. Further, it addresses the high levels of unemployment among the urban youth and improve health through high value nutrition of Nairobi Residents of Mathare informal settlement focusing on those with lifestyle diseases and infants under 5 years of age. This will involve capacity building of women and youth group leaders on dairy goat, poultry and horticulture farming in urban set-up and cascading the same to their group members and the general community. Further, more people will be reached through online learning and sharing of agri-business information in Kenya, regionally and internationally once the interactive website is established. Since June 2020, through the support of Korea SHE Foundation, Huruma Town Youth Group (HTYG) is implementing a 5 months project entitled “Enhancing urban food security through sustainable agri-business and youth empowerment” in Mathare Sub-county, Nairobi County in Kenya. The project purpose is a ‘’Food secure urban poor and youth livelihoods in informal settlements ‘ with the objectives ; 1: To empower 30 youth group leaders in agri-business in Kenya, Nairobi County from June to October 2020 and 2:To provide an online information hub to youth in agri-business in Kenya, regional and international. To achieve these objectives, we have conducted the following activities; Activity 1.1: Half-day project launch meeting for 20 key stakeholders; Activity 1.2: Training 20 youth group leaders on agri-business for 3 days and Activity 2.1: Establishing an interactive website and Facebook page for online learning.   II: PROJECT PROGRESS To execute the planned activities Huruma Town Youth Group (HTYG) implementation committee held 2 planning meetings. The purpose of the planning meetings was to allocate responsibilities, set date, and identify venue, participants, program and logistics. On 26th June, HTYG conduct the project launch held at Huruma Community Hall to popularize and give visibility to the project outline the objective, activities and expected outcomes. The meeting involved women and youth group leaders. Similarly, in attendance were Nairobi County Government Officials namely Livestock Officer, Agriculture officer and personal assistant to Huruma Ward Member of County Assembly (MCA) who represented the MCA. On 22nd, 23rd and 24th July 2020, HTYG conducted a three days capacity building to 30 women and youth leaders at Huruma Community Hall. The training involved Horticulture farming, Poultry Keeping, Dairy Goat and Pig Raring in an urban set-up. Further, the training involved practicals  / field demonstration on horticulture, poultry keeping and dairy goat raring. HTYG has also established interactive online platforms such website ( including other social media platforms such as tweeter, Instagram, facebook and Watsup. Further, to enhance our communication, HTYG has purchased a laptop, camera to support in documentation. For visibility purposes, HTYG produced a project roll-up banner and organizational roll-up banner as well.   III: Project Plan Forward After the capacity building exercise for the women and youth leaders on urban Agri-business, the meeting came up with a call for action moving forward as follows; Follow-ups- HTYG agreed with the participants that the group would conduct on-site extension services to the trained groups upon request. HTYG has already initiated the on-site extension services to Mathare River   and Scalaton Youth Groups. The extension services involved poultry keeping and horticulture farm set-up. Further, HTYG donated start-up stock to the groups as beginners. Other groups such as Kibichoi and Huruma Town Green Peace has made their requests, which HTYG is considering for support. Online training-HTYG will set-up and administrate an online platform to engage the Mathare Sub-County Farmers. This platform will be used to ask farming questions and answers provided by HTYG team. HTYG has establish a watsup and facebook online platforms for interactive agri-business sessions. The platforms are as follows; facebook(H-townyouthgroup and H-towndairygoat) and Watsup (MATHARE URBAN FARMERS ASS). These platforms are for training farmers beyond Mathare and involves technical experts such as Veterinary Officers, Local NGOs in the urban farming ecosystem. The watsup plaform already has 60 active members while the facebook accounts have over 1000 members. Trained youth leaders to train their group members and other youth and women. The trained youth leaders will be issued with training tools, which they will use to empower their group members and the general community. As a result of this action point, already 4 youth groups (Mathare River, Scalaton, Kibichoi and Hu Town Green Peace has already trained their members. HTYG is making follow-ups with other groups. Youth and women start-ups- it was agree that those groups interested in a start-up would seek for assistance from HTYG. In realizing this action point, HTYG has already supported Mathare River and Scalaton Youth Groups to begin start-up. This has been through provision of chicken and seedlings for Horticulture set-up. HTYG plans to continue pursuing these action points within the project timeline as well as after the the project closeout.    IV: PHOTOS Figure 1 Participants following proceedings during project launch on 26th June,2020 at Huruma Community Hall in Mathare Sub-county. This is through the support of Korea Safety Environment Foundation Figure2: The county Livestock officer Mr.Ezakiel Njuguna addressing participants during project launch on 26th June, 2020 in Mathare Slums. This is through the support of Korea Safety Environment Foundation Figure 3: The Chief Guest Ms. Janet Gateri who is also the Nairobi County Agriculture officer address the participants and declared the project officially launched. This is through the support of Korea Safety Environment Foundation  Figure 4: Mr. Victor Emolit Ojoo.   who is personal assistant to area members of county assembly (MCA) and representing the MCA addressing the launch meeting on 26th June, 2020 at Huruma Community Hall. This is through the support of Korea Safety Environment Foundation TRAINING AND FIELD DEMOSTRATION PHOTOS Figure 5: Huruma Town Youth Leaders training in session in Mathare slums at  Huruma Community Hall. The is through support of Korea Safety Health & Environment Foundation Figure 6 Huruma Town Youth Group on farm Urban Vegetable Farming field demonstration Youth Leaders Training in Mathare slums by Kevin Uduny. This is through support by Korea Safety Health and Environment Foundation Figure 7 Huruma Town Youth Leaders training in session in Mathare slums at  Huruma Community Hall. The is through support of Korea Safety Health & Environment Foundation Figure 8 Huruma Town Youth Group on farm Urban Vegetable Farming field demonstration Youth Leaders Training in Mathare slums by Kevin Uduny. This is through support by Korea Safety Health and Environment Foundation Figure 9:Huruma Town Youth Group on farm Urban Farming Dairy Goat field demonstration for Youth Leaders Training in Mathare slums by Sylvester Onyango. This is through support by Korea Safety Health and Environment Foundation Figure 10: Huruma Town Youth Group on farm Urban Farming Chicken raring  field demonstration for Youth Leaders Training in Mathare slums by Sylvester Onyango explaining about chick brroding. This is through support by Korea Safety Health and Environment Foundation
[MANTASA] The Rights to Food and Nutrition Workshop for Indigenous Women of Papua
Project Description The problems that are going to be solved from this activity is to reconstruct the indigenous women’s perception about their state of food and nutrition. Malnutrition, especially stunting is high in this village despite their village being surrounded by jungle that provides food, water and medicine all year round. However, their diet patterns have changed since the government food aid project as they are considered as poor people. When the food aid stops, they have formed an addiction to rice and instant foods. Traditionally they do not eat rice, instead their staple food is sago and tubers which is eaten together with wild vegetables, mushrooms, nuts, roots, fruits as well as wild games such as bats, wild boar and gophers. Now after the government “domesticated'' them in houses and created addiction to processed food, the number of malnutrition amongst children and women spikes.   Project Progress Due to the situation with the COVID-19, the workshop which was planned to be carried out in July should be postponed by September. The Indonesian government just lifted up the travel ban throughout Indonesia, so people now can travel again with strict conditions. We are also concerned about the safety of indigenous community that we will visit, so we need to make sure that everyone is in good health and properly tested before we go to the village for a workshop. The workshop venue is in a remote village in the middle of the jungle in the Arfak Mountains. Electricity is available from 6 PM to 6 AM, there is no phone signal there and it takes 5-6 hours from Manokwari district to reach this village, when the weather is good.   So far while we were waiting for the condition to be better we have focused on designing the workshop. In this 4 days workshop that will be done in Ihyou village, Neney district, Manokwari, West Papua will be followed by 25 indigenous women from Sougb and Atam tribe. The workshop is designed based on participatory rural appraisal (PRA) theory. We will invite the participants to recognize their potentials, problems and strategies to overcome the problems regarding food and nutrition. We have anticipated that some participants are illiterate, so we combine different methodologies in the workshop so it is inclusive, like drawing, cooking, singing, dance etc. As an overview of the workshop flow. First we will ask the indigenous women to trace back their food culture by remembering what they were eaten when they were young and also what their parents and grandparents were eaten in the past and if these foods are still available in the jungle through transect walk. And then we will talk about the nutrition content of jungle foods they have found based on their color. The next step is to recognize their rights regarding food and nutrition and what they can do. The result of the workshop will be written as a recommendation for Papuan People’s Assembly (Majelis Rakyat Papua) for advocacy purposes to the Indonesian government. Fig. 1. Neney District shows in red dot   The workshop will be held in the first week of September, we are still waiting for the head of the village’s confirmation about the exact date. The workshop will run for 3 hours each day, starts from morning to lunch time. After lunch time, the participants need to go to their field which is located in the middle of the jungle to take care of their plants. So we will need to be very efficient with our time.   Project plan forward Our local team at the moment is in Ihyou village to prepare for the workshop, including finding potential participants. We expect the participants would come from different backgrounds, like housewives and health workers. Initially we will also be going to do some online sessions, but unfortunately it is impossible to do as phone signal is very unreliable in the village. And also only small numbers of people have cell phones in the village. So, we will focus on strengthening the content of the workshop and we also work together with a local NGO in Manokwari who have been working with people in Ihyou village for the last one year and they will be the one doing follow up and monitoring for us. We expect continuation in this project and we have talked with our networks about future possibilities to continue our work after the workshop.   Photos All photos belong to Risna Hasanuddin                  
[Annyeong Pilipinas NYVC] Project iCARE
Living in an archipelagic country within the Pacific Ring of Fire, the Philippines has always been vulnerable in terms of earthquakes, volcanic eruption, and surges/tsunami. Also, belonging to a developing country, a pandemic such as the COVID-19 would be a challenge to handle due to still developing health care systems. Not mentioning us belonging as one of the top three polluters of the ocean, worldwide. In addition, Philippines has experience internal conflict for over four decades in which resulted terror and horror to the people. The recent volcanic eruption in Taal, Batangas, storm surge brought by Typhoon Haiyan in Tacloban City, Leyte and the siege in Marawi City, Lanao del Sur were the recent events that caused thousands of casualties and fatalities. That is why, Team Annyeong Pilipinas NYVC is here to give Project iCARE. This will revolve on the initiatives that will tackle and instill awareness in terms of safety, health, and environment at home, in school and in the community. Project iCARE is a 3-month rolling caravan for street children and marginalized schools in three of most vulnerable places in the Philippines that has been greatly affected by volcanic eruption, storm surge, siege, and the pandemic recently - a caravan that will teach our young people on the importance of safety, health, and hygiene practices. This will also share stories on disaster response and what to do in times of catastrophe, especially that the area has just survived the catastrophe, designed on the level of understanding of our beneficiaries. Promotion of safe spaces and sustainable living by caring for the environment will also be one of the modules. Project iCARE aims to introduce a three-part module to children of our chosen community. Our general objective is to achieve #ZeroCasualty in time of catastrophe and make our beneficiary #AlwaysReady by educating them on things in times of calamity. We will start with three schools/communities in three of the major islands in the Philippines namely, Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Through #iCARE4Safety, we will teach our beneficiaries awareness in safety at home, in school and in their community by giving them real-life scenarios and materials to always be aware of the dangers in any place and for them to prepare for any safety controls to lessen unsafe conditions. Through #iCARE4Health, we will instill the habit of proper hygiene, WASH and introduce the importance of balanced meals and exercise by coordinating with schools to provide access to handwashing facility and by giving them the importance and awareness of mental health in our wellness. Lastly, through #iCARE4Environment, plant the seed of hope by teaching them proper segregation, recycling, water and energy conservation and tree planting. We will also explain the importance of an environment-friendly lifestyle. The project also includes conducting facilitation of activity for the 300 students, developing, and distributing 300 modules, distributing hygiene and emergency kits, appointing SHE champions in each area and creating partnerships and networks. In addition, we expect the SHE champions to develop ideas and transform this into activities that could benefit their local community.   Project Progress Identification of areas The project initially selected 3 areas for the project namely Lemery in Batangas, Tacloban City, and Marawi City. These areas were affected by natural and human-induced disasters such as volcanic eruption, terrorist attacks and conflicts, and typhoon. Moreover, the team decided to include the Payatas as one of the areas to be included. Payatas landslide incident that was happened last July 10, 2020 in which resulted the destruction of 100 squatters' houses, caused at least 218 people’s life and 300 missing persons. However, it was suggested that the official figures may rise to 1,000. Plus, Payatas as part of the city where the pandemic is concentrated in the country. Partnerships The team has conducted several consultative meetings with our partners. Set of letters of partnership and invitation were sent last July 2020. Partners are categorized into 3 parts, the local community partner, national partner, consultant, and media partners. Local community partner refers to the organizations or institutions that are based on the specified areas. These organizations will help us to identify specific needs of each area. For the Batangas area, local government unit of Brgy. Arumahan and the faculty of Ananias C. Hernandez Memorial National High School were selected as our local community partners while 2030 Youth Force in the Philippines-Eastern Visayas, Local Youth Development Council-Tacloban City, and Sangguniang Kabataan Federation-Tacloban City for Tacloban City and Lanao del Sur I Division Office, Super Lumba and SK Federation of Marawi City for Marawi City. National partners refer to institutions or organizations that has a specific organizational purpose that is inclined to the safety, health, and environment topics or issues. Breakwater PH and Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation were selected as the national partner for safety, University of the Philippines Manila-College of Public Health Student Council and Youth for Mental Health Coalition, Inc. for health, and Climate Change Commission PH for environment. National partners will help us to identify key point, subject areas and visual strategies that will be included in creating the module as well as facilitating the activity. Consultants refer to the individuals who were considered as expert or who has accreditation on the subject matters from the national agencies. Consultants will orient the team regarding the safety, health and environment areas as well as developing learning strategies for the facilitating the activities. For the consultants, Ms. R. Lagasca, Secretary-General of Youth for Mental Health Coalition Philippines, Inc. was invited to discuss the mental health, Ms. B. Perez, Chief of Research and Planning Section of the Quezon City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office for the disaster preparedness, Dr. V. Mercado for hygienic precautions and disease spreading preventions, Mr. E. Lazarte for road, home, and school safety topic, and Youth Leaders for Environmental Action Federation for environment topic. Meetings with the consultants will run from July to September 2020. Due to COVID-19 pandemic situation and enhanced community quarantine that was implemented in the Metro Manila, national partner and consultant meetings were conducted thru zoom. However, consultative meetings with local community partner will be conducted thru face-to-face since some of our team members are in the respective local community areas. Media partners refers to the companies or organization or individuals who can promote the said activity in their own media platforms. The team is still identifying who will be the official media partners for the project. Identification of participants During the meetings, the team decided to invite students and kids that are primarily ages 10-12 years old since these age groups are considered as one of vulnerable groups in which they starting to explore ideas and activities and want to become more independent as well as they have intermediate learning capacity to understand the topics. Local community partners will help the team to identify the participants. Identification of participants was scheduled in the months of August to September. Development and Distribution of iCare modules The team started to draft the modules that will be distributed and used by the beneficiaries last June 2020. The team also decided to focus on 5 topics namely road, home and school safety, hand washing, wearing of mask and personal protective equipment, physical distancing, mental health awareness, and environment. After months of revision, the team finalized the module that were sent to our national partners for their inputs on August 7, 2020. Pilot testing of the modules will be also done and scheduled after national partners given their feedbacks. Distribution was done on August 8 for the leg in Lemery, Batangas area. Modules that will be distributed for Tacloban and Marawi leg will be sent via courier. Distribution of iCare supply kits The team identified the kits that will be distributed to the participants. These includes hand soap, face mask, alcohol, toothbrush, toothpaste, face shield, whistle, and flashlights. Last July, the team procured some of the items included thru traditional and online shopping. The kits will be used by the participants on practicing the knowledges and ideas that they have learned during the activity. Kits were also distributed last August 8. Facilitation of Project iCare activity Due to the COVID-19 pandemic situation, the team created contingency plans for conducting the activity. For plan A, face to face activity will be implemented and the team will still go to the respective areas; for plan B, volunteers and local community partners will be trained on how to conduct the activity given that at least one team member is present on the area; and for plan C, activities will be done thru zoom and participants will be given internet expenses. The team scheduled the facilitation of activities for each area. August 15, 2020 for the Batangas area, September 5 or 12 in Tacloban and September 19 or 26 for Marawi. However, the team decided to change the mode of activity for Batangas from face-to-face to an online activity due to the modified enhance quarantine that was imposed in Metro Manila in which 2 of the team members were located in. Nevertheless, the Tacloban and Marawi leg will still be done on face-to-face mode of activity. Teacher-volunteers helped us distribute the kits house to house to our participants in our Batangas Leg. And last August 15, we have successfully conducted our first Project iCARE. After of each activity, SHE Champions will be identified. These SHE Champions will help the team to spread and re-echo the information that they have gained to their home or neighborhood. Also, SHE Champions will create ideas and activities that they can do on their local areas. All achievements of the SHE Champions will be posted on our social media pages. Up next, Brgy. Payatas in Quezon City in NCR, then Tacloban City in Visayas, and lastly, Lanao del Sur in Mindanao. #
[Altivos Ambateños] Enhancing local consumption: Connecting rural producers with local households and small groceries shops in
Project description: The project aims to promote local consumption by connecting rural producers to households and small groceries shops owners in the city of Ambato. For this purpose, an online e-commerce platform is being constructed for rural producers to commercialize their products. In addition, rural producers are being trained through workshops to develop digital skills to manage the e-commerce platform, as well as, to develop other commercialization and management skills. Finally, through our partner CorpoAmbato, we are offering technical assistance to improve the quality of the products.   2. Project progress up to now: During the months of Jun and July, the meetings to plan the workshops and its schedule were held. In addition, we had meetings to see the initial content and structure that the e-commerce platform will have in the future. In the last week of July and the first two weeks of August three workshops were held: Controlling Costs and Expenses; Smart Investments; Consumers profile. The workshops were planned to be offline, however, due to coronavirus prevention regulations, we decided to offer them through the online meeting platform Zoom. The challenging aspect in this regard was the identification of the participants of the project because we could not visit them one by one. Instead, with our partner CorpoAmbato, we decided to open the registration and CorpoAmbato, with their expertise in the field, is filtering the potential participants to become future members of the platform. The workshops are a collective effort between Altivos Ambatenos and CorpoAmbato. So far, we have carried out three workshops with more than 40 participants and 1 meeting of technical assistance. The trainers were provided by our partner CorpoAmbato. The e-commerce platform is being constructed based on basic functionalities for commercialization, additional features will be added once the final participants of the platform are selected to adjust it to their needs.   3. Project plan forward Within the next months, four workshops will be held and continuous technical assistance will be provided to the rural producers in order to improve their products and develop their managerial and digital skills so that they can effectively commercialize their products through the platform. By the end of August, the final participants of the platform will be selected (those who show improvement and development of the skills required). From September onwards, the online e-commerce platform will be constructed with the information of the selected producers and their products. It is planned to have meetings to provide constant feedback on the use of the platform, in order to make it friendly both for the rural producers and the customers. In September the Shopify subscription will be purchased to maintain the platform operating for a year. In addition in September and October, it is planned to promote the platform through social networks. Finally, one of the most challenging issues is the creation of a formal organization formed by rural producers. This requires not only the development of skills but also the development of relations of cooperation, which usually results from constant interaction. However, due to the online meeting and workshops, there is not much space for the rural producers to get to know each other and reach the levels of interaction that direct conversation allows. This might delay the creation of a proper formal organization. Nevertheless, CorpoAmbato will take the lead to facilitate the interaction among the rural producers until a formal organization can be created.  
[Daluhay Daloy ng Buhay] Pathway to Food Security through a Maternal Ecohealth Lens
Group photo of Maternal Ecohealth Technical Working Group with Daluhay Team members 1. Project Description: Global challenges in food security leave one person in three suffering from some form of malnutrition living side-by-side, either in one country, community or in the same household (IFPRI, 2016). This challenge is particularly prevalent in the province of Aurora, northeast of Luzon, Philippines. Initial data showed that across the Aurora province, a range of about 27 to 37 households tend to skip meals 3 to 10 times in a week (Hoddinott, 1999), a factor leading to the high number of stunting and wasting cases in the province, particularly in coastal communities (Aurora Provincial Health Office, 2019). Stunting i.e. (low height for age) and wasting (low weight for age) can be attributed to the lack of protein in their diet which we documented through collaboration with the World Health Organization (PMNCH 2018). In the province of Aurora, 7 out of 8 of its municipalities are coastal and majority of the population rely on marine fisheries as one a staple food and primary protein sources. Our previous work suggests that more than 90 percent of the coastal communities are dependent on marine fisheries either as source of income or as source of food. Unfortunately, there is a continuous decline of coastal and marine resources in the province due to a proliferation of destructive fishing practices, over exploitation, poor solid waste and tourism management and a lack of institutional collaboration. This is further accelerated by challenges in isolation because of limited access to communication and transportation, leaving coastal communities with no other choice to obtain food and protein. The project focuses on promoting food security through a Maternal Ecohealth lens in Barangay San Ildefonso, Casiguran, Aurora-a community with observed environmental threat but with existing natural resources that can be potentially harnessed for food security. The first step to achieving our vision of food security in the community is to elevate awareness on the linkage between environmental health and the health of the community with a focus on mothers of the family who play central roles in family values, decision making and nutrition. An initial step to raising health and environmental awareness is to gather data on the Food security status, Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices of the community. To ensure ownership and sustainability of the project’s outputs, a technical working group (TWG) from the community was formed to serve as core implementers of the project. Courtesy calls and meetings with barangay officials and tribal council leaders were conducted. The TWG were trained on July 28-29, 2020 in Sitio Dalugan, Barangay San Ildefonso, Casiguran. The TWG of mothers will be the core group what will be taking the lead in the project implementation by working closely with Daluhay. IFPRI (2016) Global Nutrition Report 2016: From Promise to Impact –Ending Malnutrition by 2030 Choosing Outcome Indicators of Household Food Security. International Food Policy Research Institute,2033 K Street, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20006 USA. pp.27 Philippine Statistics Authority (2019) First Semester 2018 Official Poverty Statistics of the Philippines PMNCH 2018 Objectives of the Technical Working Group Formation To conduct necessary groundwork like courtesy calls / meetings with the barangay local government unit , tribal council and community members regarding the project for the formation of a technical working group To conduct a project orientation with the selected TWG and train them in data gathering To plan the next steps of the project with the TWG 2. Project progress up to now In 2016, a partnership between Daluhay and the Provincial Health Office was formed to conduct a study on the protein intake of pregnant and lactating mothers in Aurora. It was found in this study that they only consume only 20-25% of the required protein intake. To build on this partnership, a quick project orientation was conducted with the Provincial Health Officer of Aurora to share insights about the current project. After which Dr. Teh, Aurora’s Health Officer, wrote a letter to the Municipal Health Officer of Casiguran to endorse the project. Initial meetings with the Barangay and Tribal councils in Barangay San Ildefonso were conducted in order to present the project overview, its objectives and to present the endorsement from the Provincial Health Office. The Barangay local government unit approved of the project and endorsed 10 community members whom they think would be good leaders that will form the Technical Working Group. A total of seven mothers from the barangay were able to attend the training, where one-being a Barangay Health Worker- is experienced in conducting surveys in the community. Meanwhile, a tribe elder- the chieftain’s wife- also attended however, it was decided by the group that it would be best for her to sit in and participate in the project but not to conduct the surveys due to limitations in her reading and writing skills.  She actively participated in the discussions, nonetheless. Also, one of the mothers felt ill and had to rest on the second day, leaving us with 5 who were able to finish the whole program and conduct the surveys. The participants were asked to answer the pre-test found on the attached KAP questionnaire. Though they were generally not yet familiar with the topics covered, the participants showed focus and willingness to learn during the training. It was found to be challenging to connect with them at first. The generator we were counting on was broken so we had to show the presentation from our laptop. The Agtas are known to have a shy personality but as we read between the lines of how to better communicate with them, we adjusted our approach and noticed that it got them out of their shells. Instead of relying on the presentations we prepared on our laptops, we used colourful sheets of papers as metacards and manila papers as our blackboards. As we started to explain about the importance of health and the environment in detail, they were very attentive, took notes and asked questions. By the end of the workshop, they could explain the concept in their own words. The participants were also walked through the questionnaire prepared to gather data on the Knowledge, Attitude and Practices of pregnant and lactating mothers in their community. Each enumerator (TWG member) was also tasked to leave instructions for a respondent to fill out a 7-day protein diary. Tips and guidelines on conducting surveys were discussed during the training followed by a practice survey with the facilitators and a partner. Project leader Shan Alejos discussing the overview of the project Advocacy coordinator Erica Zafra showing photos of a food web to the participants Participant taking notes during discussions on Maternal Ecohealth The activity was closed with a short planning session on data gathering. Since there were 5 of them left to conduct the surveys, the participants suggested that they will split into two groups to be able to interview respondents from different zones in their barangay. Three will ride a boat to the farther parts of the San Ildefonso Peninsula while 2 will go around with a kolong kolong to locations relatively near the center of the Barangay. As of August 16, 2020, our field coordinator, Ria, communicated with us that the survey data will be sent to us in Baler next week. 3. Project Plan Forward Data from the surveys will be encoded and analyzed as soon as it is sent from Casiguran to Baler. Our target is to be able to analyze the data one week upon its arrival. Another activity will be planned to formulate the CEPA tool for the community with the TWG. As of August 13, 2020, Aurora Province has confirmed its first case of COVID-19 infection in Baler followed by another one in an adjacent municipality a day after. We will keep ourselves updated with the changes in mobility regulations in the province and keep the safety of the participants and the team of paramount importance.