I hope this email finds you well. Here, we like to share with you updates from fields and thank you for your generous donation to Seeds of Hope " Self sustainable Covid-19 relief program in Nepal.
Right now, in South east Asia Nepal became Covid Hotspot and everyday on average two dozen people are dying .In addition to the coronavirus pandemic, Nepal is facing multiple other challenges . People can't work and they can't earn. As in the rest of the world, food is more expensive because of interruption to supply lines with the country in lockdown since March 2020. But in Nepal, it is much more fatal.
Over four months ago, we have iniatated locally driven Covid-19 relife sustainable program called " Seeds of Hope" self sustainable relief program. In this program, we been able to support over 500 women and their families with your geneorus support in most remore region of Solukhumbu district in Everest region.
Now most of those crops are ready for harvest. Walking from home to home to assess the program’s progress, our field mobilizers and agriculture experts are happy to report nothing but happiness and success stories.
While we are all facing our own sets of challenges and learning to live with the “new normal,” it is inspiring to know that over 500 families in Solukhumbhu are sharing the joys of self-reliance and independence from growing their own food and knowing that they do not have to depend on unreliable food aid. Also since lockdown from December all school are remained closed so this our program also been great asset to teach thier children about agriculture and great moment of working together with mother and all family members as a beautiful program since all other jobs like trekking porters, construction, school and many other work in Himalayan region are still closed down due to the Covid-19.
The village women have been sharing how working in the farm and tending to the gardens of beans, cabbage, carrots, tomatoes, and many more crops, is actually giving them mental peace and joy. “Every morning as we tend to our little growing seeds, it gives us hopes that our days can be much different than what it used to be,” Sita from Loading village said. Many women are planning to sell their excess vegetables in the Saturday markets and expand their farming into actual businesses, while others prefer to preserve their excess vegetables for winter.
Kamala glowed with happiness as she shared her story with us. “I always dreamed of being self-reliant, but I got married early and ended up growing kids and fully dependent on my husband. Life is hard because my husband is working abroad, but income is not good and with the pandemic I was very worried for our future. When I got these seeds and the training, I was confident that I can do something on my own. Today, I am very happy that everything seems to be growing fine despite a lot of monsoon rain here. I am planning to sell the vegetables and generate some income because this is a lot more than my family can consume.”
Some basic skills taught, e.g., how to start seeds properly, pruning, 3G cutting, adding the right amount of compost fertilizer, use of raised beds, etc., were just some of the new ideas the farmers learned during the training. For example, they were happy and surprised to see the difference between the amount of tomatoes grown traditionally and after 3G cutting.
Overall, the women accepted the program wholeheartedly and, as a result, not only have fresh, healthy, home-grown foods on their plates, but also have exciting possibilities for a bright new future, food security, and happiness to share with their families.
What has proven to be very beneficial are the groups that were formed, each consisting of 25 women, with two key leaders from each group. The leaders are the liaisons between the Small World team and the women and contact us if anyone needs additional support from our experts. The women have very much enjoyed this arrangement because they can easily share their stories and problems and find solutions in their groups. Through this, the women are empowered to find workable solutions, build relationships, establish trust and independence, increase self-esteem, self- reliance, and a stronger community, all vital qualities, especially during the world pandemic.
We are determined to reach out to more women in need in spite of the challenging world and local situations. Without your support, however, none of this would be possible. We are very thankful to everyone who has helped us to reach these families and bring new hope and enormously beneficial change to their lives.
Namaste & Thank You.