Flor with one of the irrigation hoses
The sertão of Bahia is a semi-arid area of the state where climate change has made rain and drought more and more erratic. Many people in the sertão make a living on subsistence farming, which can be quite difficult when there is little access to water. Many farmers grow "drought crops", using no water or irrigation systems. Farmers who use this method have to work extremely hard with the risk of not getting any return.
Six years ago, Flor Oswaldo, a small land-owner outside the town of Pinatadas, Bahia, grew his crops this way. He had water on his property but had no way to access it. Flor had to get water with his horse drawn cart every weekend in order to have water in his house for the week. As you can imagine, for a busy farmer Flor's time is valuable and it was inconvenient to have to fetch the water every week. Six years ago, Flor got a micro loan from Adapta Sertão to be able to buy an irrigation system. This system includes a solar powered pump that pumps water from dams that the Bahian state government has built on his property to be able to water his crops. This has allowed Flor to be able to grow produce such as beans, corn, bananas, cassava, tomatoes, passion fruit, and more. Flor is also able to use the solar panels for his pump to provide electricity for his house.
Now that Flor doesn´t have to get water every week, he is able to dedicate more time to his farm, and able to relax on the weekends! With the new irrigation system, he is earning minimum wage by selling his produce to the co-op that Adapta Sertão runs. The micro-loan irrigation project and the co-op run by Adapta Sertão are just two examples of the active civil society that exists in Pintadas. Flor is proof that this civil society is really working for the citizens it strives to help.
Flor showing ITF traveler Josh irrigation hose