Bamna used to long for something to change.
The wind picks up and small dust clouds form on the path winding through the remote village of Jalokundi. The breeze rocks the tall, strong stalks of maize and rice on Bamna Paharia’s half-acre plot of land.
Despite the lack of rain and high winds this season, Bamna is confident that he will have more than enough food for his family this year. He surveys his small plot of land with a sense of hope.
For years, Bamna and his wife struggled to make ends meet.
The rocky soil and hilly landscape are difficult for the local villagers to farm, even in the best rainy seasons. Bamna had been struggling to grow his crops for years.
When their fifth child was born, Bamna knew something needed to change. There was no way his tiny plot of land would produce enough food for his family. His children barely had enough, and would sometimes cry out in the night longing for something to eat.
While mulling over his options, Bamna heard about an innovative farming workshop being held in a nearby village by EFICOR, Tearfund Canada’s local partner. According to EFICOR, Bamna could double or even triple his current crop yield! Determined to provide for his family, Bamna decided to attend with other members of his village.
The start of a new dream
In the workshop, Bamna learned all about Conservation Agriculture, a farming method that: 1) uses minimum tillage 2) keeps the soil covered with mulch and 3) involves regular crop rotations. He also learned the importance of intercropping; growing crops like peas and maize together. As soon as he finished his Conservation Agriculture training, Bamna immediately got to work on his small plot of land.
The results were incredible! Even though he only planted 1kg of maize seed, Bamna was able to harvest 100kg of maize by the end of the growing season. Bamna and his wife now have more than enough to feed their children and even have leftovers to sell at the local market.
The future of agriculture
Conservation Agriculture is helping farmers like Bamna and his family lift themselves out of extreme poverty. They’re no longer going hungry and have new dreams for their future. Supporters like you make these stories possible.
Instead of handouts, you’re giving practical training that is helping people lift themselves out of extreme poverty. Your support is giving dignity to farmers like Bamna as they learn new ways to provide for their families despite ongoing challenges like the COVID-19 pandemic and a changing climate.