In pursuance of the agreement signed with Agriculture Research and Development Centre (ARDC-Wengkhar), Commercial Agriculture Resilient Livelihood Enhancement Programme (CARLEP) and Dzongkhag Agriculture in 2016 to identify and train lead farmers, SJI identified 8 lead farmers. The 1st training was conducted by the Agriculture Research and Development Centre (ARDC) trained lead farmer Mr. M.C. Gurung for a week on his farm in April 2017.
From 15-20 May, SJI led the visits of 5 prospective lead farmers along with a representative from Chokyi Gyatso Institute (CGI) and Mr. M.C. Gurung to ARDC Wengkhar, Agriculture Research and Development Sub-centres (ARDSC) at Lingmithang and Khangma to explore and widen the farmers’ understanding of the best agricultural practices. Visits sometimes make one appreciate of what one practices.
The visits refreshed the farmers of the training provided by Mr. M. C. Gurung. The team enthusiastically interacted with the local progressive farmers, who use chemical fertilizers and pesticides, observed watering technologies in the field alleviating farm labour shortage and diversified product development, minimising food wastage…
The visit was productive in terms of building partnership with the centres and enhancing the farmers’ knowledge and skills. The visit made the farmers feel good and proud about what they were doing i.e. organic farming and felt a greater sense of responsibility towards “Organic Bhutan 2020”. In Khangma, as desired by the host, SJI representative made a presentation of its policies and programs.
SJI places on record the support of the ARDC and ARDSCs. It looks forward to an enriching collaboration for greater public good.
Before the team’s departure to the centres a debriefing on the 1st training and briefing on the visit was conducted at SJI. Considering the potential of lead farmers being community leaders, SJI educated them on waste management. 2 crafts women trained them on bottle cutting.