By, Puspadiari, Manikaji school, Grade 11
Since joining the specialized dryland permaculture farming training program, (organized by EBPP and sponsored by an Australian Volunteers Climate Action grant) with my school friends, my understanding of these new farming techniques, which are much different to my family’s traditional methods, has become an asset for implementing farming practices on our families’ land.
During the training, learning theory followed by hands-on fieldwork, we learn everything from recognizing the slope and contour of the land to creating terraces and efficient water flow systems. Additionally, we learned how to make organic compost using local materials instead of imported chemical fertilisers.
After several months of learning, we had a study tour to a village that had successfully implemented these techniques in their farming, giving us the confidence to apply this new knowledge to our families’ land. To expedite this process, we held a lottery among our friends, the winners receiving assistance from the entire group to cultivate their land. This lottery is held every week until all 29 students in the group have finished working on their land
We organized groups with different tasks, including determining the land's contour, constructing terraces, and collecting materials for organic compost - and have already worked on five different locations. We also involved the landowners' families in this process to ensure they understand these improved farming practices.
We hope that all the groups can complete these projects by the end of the dry season so that they are ready for planting when the rainy season arrives. We also plan to share this knowledge with the surrounding community so that everyone can achieve better agricultural results. Support from all parties will greatly assist us in realizing this vision, which is to enhance the health and economic well-being of the community through sustainable organic farming. •