Food security for women farmers in rural India

by Sophia Akash Foundation
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Food security for women farmers in rural India
Climate-smart women farmers
Climate-smart women farmers

We are thrilled to report that despite the considerable impact of Covid-19 during 2020, Sridhar and his wife and hundreds of other farmers have started reaping the fruits of their labour. Our partner, Kheyti will help them to receive the best price for their harvest and secure the income necessary to continue feeding their families.

Your generous donations are delivering these positive outcomes. Please be sure to donate as much as you can today and know that you are changing their lives for the better !

Greater empowerment for poor women farmers 

We are also thrilled to report that following the launch of smaller, more affordable climate-smart greenhouses, more and more poor women farmers are also beginning to benefit. Together with our partner, we hope to provide 500 women farmers during 2021 with the climate-smart greenhouses. These will help them to take charge of their farming lives as well as feed their families with greater certainty. 

Women farmers, like Reshma, are provided the introduction, training and support to help them start using their greenhouses to produce healthy crops even in the smallest of farms and in the harshest of conditions. 

The prospect of equipping another woman farmer with her own greenhouse for life is now more affordable than ever before. With every donation of just $500 we can help another family to prosper from sustainable and climate friendly farming. 

The plight of women farmers 

To help provide context for the efforts on the ground and to place a value on your generous donations, we can report that 75% of all women across rural India are farmers. They diligently and passionately pursue their farming heritage despite receiving little or no help from others. They strive to feed their families, nurture their children and protect their farms despite considerable hardships, having no rights to the land they till while receiving little or no help from others. 

With the help of your generous and continued support, our partner, Kheyti's unstinting efforts on the ground, these women farmers are improving their farming practices, establishing their own sustainable livelihoods and gaining equality amongst their peers. 

Please continue to support and follow their journey towards greater prosperity 

Fruits of their labour
Fruits of their labour
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Meet Sridhar, a 48-year-old farmer from Telangana who joined the Climate Smart Greenhouse Program in 2019. More on his inspiring farming journey below…

Continuing Progress

Your generous contributions are helping 244 farmers to grow healthy crops, earn valuable income and provide food security for their families despite the Covid-19 pandemic! On behalf of our farmers we thank you and ask that you please continue lending your support.

Together with our on-the-ground partner, various initiatives have been organised to assist the farmers to overcome the Covid-19 challenges. These include maintaining access to environmentally friendly seeds, fertilisers and pesticides, providing proactive agronomy guidance using WhatsApp and securing the sale of their harvests for the best possible income.

Meet Sridhar, who together with his wife has benefitted from your contributions. Sridhar has been able to keep his farm running and provide for his family throughout the pandemic-related challenges. 

Investing in their future

Sridhar and his wife started using the Climate Smart Greenhouse during 2019, designed to protect their crops from adverse weather, pests and climate shocks, all of which had previously destroyed much of their open farming crops.

With the help of your contributions, Sridhar and his family now earn an average disposable income of USD 98 per month throughout the year. This together with the considerably less usage of water, better preservation of their land and soil and an almost zero carbon footprint means that Sridhar is one of hundreds of farmers prospering from their more sustainable farming efforts.

Each day, Sridhar and his wife inspect their plants' health and receive prompt agronomy guidance via WhatsApp. This helps them to deal with any challenges such as pests, lack of nutrients or water or excessive heat. Sridhar and his wife find this form of continual guidance invaluable and actively encourage fellow farmers to adopt the same methods. With the benefit of the additional income, Sridhar is helping his daughter to complete her University education. This will help future generations in Sridhar's family to also continue their progress out of poverty.

Empowering Women Farmers

Following on from our last report, our partner is now busy organising the delivery of the even more affordable Greenhouse Lite for 50 women farmers. This will be the start of an effort over the coming 6-12 months to help educate and assist these women farmers to adopt the use of the Climate Smart greenhouses. When completed, this effort will have helped to improve the food security and livelihoods of these women farmers as well as provide the basis of extending this program.

Please keep following us to learn of their progress through this exciting journey organised with the help of your valuable contributions.

Family tending to their crops
Family tending to their crops
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Uninterrupted support for farmers during COVID-19
Uninterrupted support for farmers during COVID-19

Climate-smart greenhouses sustaining livelihoods for poor farmers  

We are pleased to report that 223 farmers are now benefitting through their use of climate-smart greenhouses and the plan remains to start enabling another 327 farmers as soon as Covid-19 restrictions are removed.  

Despite the severity of the Covid-19 restrictions, especially in terms of access to and transport from their villages, these farmers have continued to receive uninterrupted guidance and support from our partners,including remote agronomy advice using WhatsApp and help with the transport of their produce to the markets. By enabling and maintaining these important services during these exceptional timesthe farmers have retained their ability to earn a steady income, secure seeds and fertilizers needed to start their next crop cycle and maintain the food security for their families. 

Many of these farmers have however, also lost the value of theiropen land winter crops that normally would have been harvested, transported, and sold to the markets during the Covid-19 lockdown periodbut instead have had to be sold in smaller quantities locally or consumed domestically. 

This has meant that for many of these farmers, their climate-smart greenhouses have proved to be the principal source of sustainable income. 

 

Introducing the $500 climate-smart greenhouse  

In such times of adversity, we believe innovation can helpWe are pleased to therefore announce the planned launch of the $500 climate-smart greenhouse. These smaller and more affordable greenhouses will help extend the same principal benefits of resource preservation, reduced water consumption, greater food security and environmentally friendly farming to even more poor farmers. 

A donation of $500 will help us to secure a climate-smart greenhouse for a small-holding farmer and her family. 

Through the planned introduction of a broader range of crops (e.g. onions, cabbages, carrotsthese farmers will also be able to rotate their crops, continue to sustain their livelihoods and food security as well as provide greater crop diversity to their local markets. 

With the help of constant innovation to meet the challenges of struggling small-holding farmers, your generous and continued support is helping to improve their food security and sustain their livelihoods. 

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At the start of 2020, we have 150 farmers producing and earning an average of $65 per month. This means a 78% increase in yearly income and providing greater food security for households! With more scalable and affordable programs, we aim to reach 1,500 farmers by the end of 2020. 

 

Thank you very much to all our generous donors; your continued support has made these milestones possible!  

 

Progress till date:  

We reduced loan release time from an average of 100 days with the first 50 farmers in 2019 to less than 15 days for the last 50 farmers in 2019. We have also launched version 6 of our greenhouse costing 25% less than the last while installation time has been reduced from 7 days to only 2 days. This means more farmers can access greenhouse technologies for a lower cost to provide food security for the wider community. 

 

How did we achieve this? 

In terms of access to loans, we expanded and deepened partnerships with financiers. We have also scaled from 18 people in one location to 46 people across 7 offices! The deepened expertise and technology ensured the lowest cost and fastest time to install greenhouses. This means we can replicate and scale-up our work across regions to reach further farming communities.  

 

2020 Goals: 

 
We aim to complete the ‘Greenhouse Lite’ at less than 50% of the cost of the current structure, increase average income per farmer per month to $80, and build a team of 100 persons across multiple office locations. With proven replicability and breakthrough affordability, we aim to help 1,500 farmers by the end of 2020! 

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Climate Smart Greenhouses = Greater Food Security for Poor Farmers

 

650 farming families enrolled, 150 farmers providing greater food security for their families despite some of the worst droughts and floods.

 

We are proud to report first concrete, tangible results of climate smart greenhouses delivering quality produce using organic farming methods and considerably less water while generating sustainable farmer incomes.

 

Our heartfelt thanks and warmest greetings for the festive season ahead. You have all continued to generously support these efforts and we are all witnessing the positive outcomes that we all wished for - farming families securing greater food security for their families.

 

Please continue to give your support generously

 

With more and more farmers growing quality produce, adopting better, more organic farming practices giving rise to sustainable levels of income and equally importantly, with climate smart farming.

 

Progress till date:

 

Our partners in India have successfully enrolled 650 farmers and installed a total of 150 climate smart greenhouses to date! This means that we have laid the foundations for helping another 500 farmers to benefit from environmentally friendly farming methods that result in greater food security for their families throughout the year.

 

How did we achieve this? 

By providing the farmers with support and guidance throughout the growing season, equipping the farmers with better quality seeds, encouraging them to adopt organic farming methods and helping them to bring their better quality and nutrient rich produce to local and urban markets.

 

With your generous support we are developing better, more robust climate smart greenhouses and making ready a greater variety of crops that the farmers can sow and grow with confidence to help keep their soil nutrient rich and devoid of chemical fertilisers and pesticides.

 

With the help of a more scalable and affordable program, we are confident of equipping another 500 farming families with the tools and means with which to grow and harvest better quality crops that can provide for a more reliable source of income.

 

Adopting Organic Farming Practices - Ancestral Intelligence !

 

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Organization Information

Sophia Akash Foundation

Location: London - United Kingdom
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @sophiaakashfdn
Project Leader:
Kaushik Kappagantulu
Hyderabad, Telangana India
$27,281 raised of $50,000 goal
 
266 donations
$22,719 to go
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