One of the impacts of environmental degradation in the village of Atebes, as in many Ethiopian highlands have been extreme soil erosion and consequently, the drying up of streams. When soil is washed down stream, the bare rocks do not absorb the water during the rainy season. The life span of the streams became short months following the end of the rainy season. Women and children spent several hours a day trekkingto collect water.
One of the interventions we tried in 2012 was trying to stop the rushing floods during the rainy season by building check dams using gabion walls on the upper slope of the dried stream. During the the summer rains of 2012 the largest gabion stracture was filled with sand. We have photos of before and after the check dam strucutre and the stream to show the differnece.
As the picture of April 2012 shows, a little girl is trying to fill her water container (plastic Jerican) with a tiny can. It took her almost an hour to fill it with water. We took a picutre on a similar site in February this year. The stream did not only improve but the two oxen's body is half inside the water. We are told that not only are the farmers fetching water from her but , even farmers from down stream are coming her to fetch water. The farmers are in the process of devleing laws on water mangement. The spring is now cleaned and fenced. We are also asked by the farmers to help with the purchse of additional gabion wires and the farmers will use their labor to collect stones and fill it.
When the stream is fully recharged, we believe that that farmers will not only have water for humans and animals but also for spreading their gardens close to the spring.
Dear supporters and contirbuted,
I would like to share with you a spontanous adoption of the use of clay pots for sub-surface irrigation in the dry lands. I saw it in the project and it is my own picture. As you can see, one of our project partners have planted tomatoe on the side of the water filled clay pot that irrigates the apple tree. The tomatoe is clearly happy as it gets the water from clay pot directly to its roots as well as a 12-hour tropical sun-shine. When asked about this Hailu said that he now clearly understands the use of the water filled buried clay pot irrigaiton as an efficient and reliablewatering system in his arid village and will continue to grow vegetables to support his family. For Ato Hailu, this was an experiment and the result was success.
Please note that this is your money doing something good and putting sustainability on the ground in the most vulnerable parts of the world, the arid lands. Again, thank you for your continued support and please keep safe and happy during this Holiday season. We wish you a happy New Year!!!
This year was good as I spent 11 months in Ethiopia consulting the Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency on environmental and climate related issues. It gave me an opportunity to look into the project. We almost finished the surface water harvesting system for the pilot demonstration project. We are only left to put cover on it (look at the pciture)
I am back to Colorado now and if any one wants to know more about the project please feel free email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am happy to share with you that we bought and distributed 500 apple seedlings in the village of Atebes in July 2012. This was in response to demands of by the farmers to plant more fruit trees. Since the beginning of the project in July 2010, the number of apple trees planted by 200 farmers in the village has reached 1400 thanks to your support. The project is also in the process of completing the surface water harvesting well that started last year (see picture). The contract to dig the pond was given to students so that they can get additional skills and income. The project is almost completed it will collect water during the next rainy season. In collaboration with the local government and extension agents, we have began a restoration of a highly degraded creek using gabion wires. We will send you additional information on the impact of the project in our next report.
Thank you for the generous support. We will appreciate if you share the information with your friends and families so that we can reach our goal. Thank you.
Our volunteer recently visited the project. The construction of surface water harvesting structure is going on as schedule. It will be filled with water in the coming rainy season. A 30 cubic meter structure is dug, stones are collected, and cements are bought for the structure. We hope to bring a picture of the pond filled with water at the end of the rainy season and lead to sustainable water supply. Our apples that are being watered with buried clay pots one year and 11 months. The fruit trees will be pruned very soon and additional training given to our partners. Our volunteer recently sent us one of the trees starting to give fruit at this young age. This achieved because of the support of volunteers alike. Thank you for your continued support.
Dear supporters and friends,
I visited the pilot project on January 21, 2012. January is the heart of the dry season in northern Ethiopia. Our roof water harvesting systems are getting low and our volunteers are worried. They think that unless we buy water even the efficient clay pot irrigation system might give way. The completion of the underground water harvesting system before the beginning of the rainy season in June will guarantee water for next year.
Despite the drought and increased temperature the efficiency of the clay pot irrigation system is visible. We have captured pictures of apples with flowers and small fruits. They also green in a dry and brown area. People in the village are chatting as to why the plants are not dry. That made the people very optimistic that the system works. Recently I was contacted by the county agricultural extension bureau and told me of their support for this kinds of initiatives. I plant to talk to them and share the information in my next report. Look at the attached pictures for more information.
Thank you for supporting the initiative
Tsegay from Ethiopia.
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