Agriculture-focused self-help group in Nepal sow seeds for Kajiman’s future
Stories | September 15, 2022
Like in Australia, agriculture in Nepal plays a major role in the country’s economy. Ensuring farming methods are sustainable is critical not just to keep food on tables but to ensure farmers have a livelihood well into the future. In Nepal, CBM Australia is working with local partners to help people with disabilities access sustainable and climate-resilient farming activities.
This is helping people like Kajiman, a 68-year-old man who depended on traditional agriculture to support his family – a method that only generated enough income to last three months.
Kajiman was not born with a disability, but at age nine, he fell and injured his leg. His leg injury persisted because his family could not afford to get him immediate medical treatment.
In addition to having a disability, Kajiman also spent six long years battling cancer and acquired a large debt to access treatment. Thankfully Kajiman won his battle with cancer, but he still only had the use of one leg.
Life became a bit easier for Kajiman once he became a member of a CBM partner self-help group. The group not only motivated him to believe in himself but it taught him valuable lessons about sustainable agriculture. He learnt how to use quality seeds to improve crop production, how to conserve water by using drip irrigation, how to grow crops in plastic tunnel shelters, and about mulching, cutting, and staking plants.
The group also taught Kajiman about managing finances which helped him to save enough money to build his own small-scale farm.
“Difficult situations may arise in life. Falling down in life is common, but to stand up and do something in life is what separates the achievers. Kajiman successfully controlled cancer and his physical disability and has been able to be financially independent,” says a project staff member.
Using the plastic tunnel and the techniques he learnt, Kajiman can now grow vegetables, both inside and outside the shelter. He sells his products at the local market and uses the profits to pay for medical treatment, send his children to school, and for other household expenses. His friends and neighbours are proud of his success.
“Now I am more confident to earn money from vegetable farming, and I am suggesting the other group member pursue vegetable farming. Together we can expand vegetable farming and increase profit,” says Kajiman.
You can see the impact of this progressive project on another Nepalese man here.
CBM acknowledges the support of the Australian Government through the Australian NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP).
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