Green Technology and Training for Farmers, Mexico

by Education for Peace (EduPaz)

Your generosity has funded the building of three sustainable agricultural demonstration plots. These areas are maintained and organized by community group members, who decide what to grow and which practices are appropriate for their land. The plots are also used to educate groups. For example:

  • Demonstrations are held for producing organic fertilizers, growing vegetables, worm composting, the cultivation of oyster mushrooms, how to utilize water filters and improved wood-saving stoves.
  • In Buenavista Pachán, the group watched a movie about pesticides and their harm on community health – it was followed up with a discussion that motivated a group of tomato farmers to practice organic tomato farming in one of their own greenhouses.

Increasing the knowledge of traditional and sustainable methods of agricultural production supports marginalized communities and strengthens the local economy.

Thank you for donating to this project, helping EduPaz continue to educate and empower rural farmers.

Starting October 12, GlobalGiving will be matching donations for this project! Donate and maximize your impact!

With your donations, EduPaz has helped train farmers and their families on agroecology techniques.  A few of these recent accomplishments include:

  • After learning about the health hazards caused by insecticides, tomato growers in the community of Buena Vista Pachán formed a group to plan and build an organic greenhouse.
  • Community microcredit groups have increased member participation, with a higher rate of loan repayment. 
  • Members have created community orchards and vegetables gardens where they can learn about and put in practice sustainable farming methods.

By donating this project you are ensuring more families can benefit from this program. Thank you for your support.

With your support, a new, experienced staff member is overseeing the agroecology program as it continues to thrive with its purchase of pigs, chickens, and fruit trees. Other EduPaz programs continue to grow as well:

• The Tziscao Center provides medical services, nutrition workshops, daycare services and psychological support to those in need.

• Community microcredit groups are gaining popularity, and participants are taking a more serious approach to their savings.

• There are gender awareness workshops in the works. EduPaz is assessing what local women would like to focus on, and how they would like to participate.

Future plans for EduPaz include forming additional microcredit groups, conducting more eco-technology workshops, and training 10 young community members to become agroecology promoters.

By donating to EduPaz you are ensuring more families can benefit from this program.

Thank you for your support.

On Tuesday, March 16, all donations up to $1,000 per donor, per project will be matched. Donate on Tuesday, March 16, 2010, and maximize your gift. The latest update from EduPaz reports the eco-demonstration site has been successful in installing several key features, including many varieties of fruit trees and a fully functional biodigestor that is successfully converting pig manure into enough energy to run the site. The “train-the-trainers” program – which trains community members on sustainable agriculture and ecological protection –has been going well, too. From the latest report: • A two-day workshop was conducted on installing wood-saving stoves and biodigestors (using the one on site). • EduPaz organized a one-week workshop in green technologies at the center, where they also offered scholarships to several community farmers in the area. • EduPaz provided 7 livestock-rearing training workshops covering topics such as: how to manage to small scale chicken-raising project for family consumption and for the local market; how to build chicken coops; how to feed and care for the chickens; identifying the different types of avian disease and planning a vaccine schedule for disease prevention. Similar technical assistance was provided for families growing pigs and sheep. • Regular follow-up visits were conducted to check in whether the participants adopted what they learned and to provide ongoing support.

IDEX Program Officer, Katherine Zavala visited EduPaz in August 2009 to see what they have been able to achieve so far.

With your support, EduPaz is in the process of constructing their Agroecology Training Site. They have already have started growing organic vegetables – including squash, radishes, peanuts, chayote, chipilin (herbs for broths) and green tomatoes.

“While I was there,” says Katherine Zavala, “I was able to see where they’re planning to build a chicken coup, and a space for farm animals including rabbits and sheep, as well as fruit trees (avocado, lemon, apple, pear and banana plants) AND a greenhouse to grow tomatoes. It was quite impressive, and this is only the beginning.

They've already built a space for a biodigestor. The biodigestor will use pig manure to create natural gas to produce energy for the center. The goal is to encourage people to use this kind of technology in their own homes.

I also visited 2 community groups in Tziscao including an organic coffee cooperative. Both have received microcredit loans from EduPaz. They shared how helpful it was to access microcredit through EduPaz and how much better it was than going through a bank which requires a lot of complicated paperwork and restrictive lending terms. Plus the banks only loan large sums of money, which is not necessary for these groups’ projects.

All in all, it was incredibly rewarding to learn more about EduPaz's work and meet some of the people that are benefiting from their programs and working so hard to continue that they are successful.”


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Organization Information

Education for Peace (EduPaz)

Location: Comitan de Dominguez, Chiapas - Mexico
Project Leader:
Gillian Wilson
IDEX Latin America Program Director
San Francisco, CA United States

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