ECHOcommunity Updates

Agriculture Training and Youth Motivation in NW Cambodia - Launch 2019-04-17

Guest Post by ECHOcommunity member: Muneezay Jaffery

This is part 3 of a series describing how one network organization is progressing with development of training facilities and curriculum.

On 20 December 2018, we organised a launch ceremony by inviting village and commune leaders, representatives from the provincial government and NGO partners that enabled us to complete the work on time. This truly recognizes the space as a community-led project, while Green Shoots has constructed this building there is fluidity in its function, use and purpose. For now, the purpose is agriculture training, but this can develop into enterprise hub for agribusinesses or it can become a community-learning centre.

Opening Ceremony - Green Shoots founder Jean-Marc

Photo Credit: Muneezay Jaffery

The team are now doing village outreach work with banners and hand-outs at the ready. So far we have visited nearly 10 villages in the vicinity informing residents about the new “school” what courses we offer, how the courses are structured. We plan to offer three main courses for the first Quarter of 2019. This includes: Horticulture Training/ Chicken Raising and Earthblock making. A few learning outcomes we want to achieve from the lessons are:

  • Students understand the holistic nature of the agritech Centre
  • An improved grasp of theoretical concepts around: Climate Change/ The role of smallholder farming and role of rural communities in food security
  • Ultimately we want them to not only see the bigger picture but also realise they play a key part in this.
  • We want to instil ownership and responsibility of the site into the students.

There are challenges at hand- are people interested? What sets us apart? How can we ensure regular attendance? Our approach is to pilot out our timetable on rotation. This offers students flexibility in attendance by gaining credits as and when they finish a course.

Simultaneously we are establishing partnerships with prosperous Cambodian agri-enterprises such as Amru Rice and microfinance companies to complement our trainings with enterprise development/ explaining loan cycles or just giving students a mock interview to prepare them. For many they can be agri-businesses to inspire being a part of.

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Upcoming events

Syntropic Farming Course
Sun, 23 June 2019 » Fri, 28 June 2019

Rancho Mastatal, Costa Rica

Syntropic Farming is a farming revolution grown out of Brazil and made famous by Ernst Gotsch and the Life in Syntropy short documentary. Syntropic Farming seeks to cultivate resilient ecosystems that are abundant, financially viable and heal abused land. It asks us, as stewards of the land to live in harmony with nature. It asks that we learn from nature through imitating natural processes in order to produce food. This results in abundant systems which grow healthy soils, sequester carbon, ...

Agroforestry: Designing for Impact
Mon, 15 July 2019 » Fri, 19 July 2019

ECHO Global Research and Demonstration Farm, USA

Agroforestry is the agricultural practice of combining the management of annual crops and/or animals with trees. Agroforestry systems, largely composed of perennial crops, offer the resilience needed to address extreme climatic issues such as drought and torrential rain, along with social and economic factors that influence agricultural production of small-scale farmers.  This five-day course will introduce students to key agroforestry concepts, allow them to see the various agroforestry and ...

Seed Saving and Banking
Mon, 16 September 2019 » Fri, 20 September 2019

ECHO Global Farm, USA

ECHO offers over 350 varieties in its Florida seed bank requiring diverse approaches to growing, processing, and storing seeds. This five-day course will begin in ECHO’s seed production plots to help participants better understand how crops are managed and harvested. Techniques related to both wet and dry processing of seeds will be practiced, as well as, essential tasks such as germination testing. Long-term seed storage approaches including vacuum sealing and cold storage will be explored, ...

ECHO Asia Agriculture & Community Development Conference 2019
Tue, 1 October 2019 » Fri, 4 October 2019

Holiday Garden Hotel & Resort, Thailand

“Small Scale: Up Scale”  ​ How can we help small scale farming initiatives thrive in Asia? We can provide low-cost, innovative options that allow people to grow both their crops and their knowledge, expand their operations, and scale up! ​ Join us October 1-4 for 3-days of networking and opportunities to share ideas, technologies appropriate for small scale farmers, and lots of practical demonstrations at the new ECHO Asia Seed Bank & Small Farm Resource Center! ​ In add...

Introduction to Tropical Agriculture Development- October 2019
Mon, 28 October 2019 » Fri, 1 November 2019

ECHO Global Farm, USA

Those interested in preparing for short to long-term involvement in international agriculture development are encouraged to participate in this five-day course.  Topics and discussions will be centered on improved food security and agricultural livelihoods for small-scale farmers in developing countries.  Participants will be introduced to the complexities related to poverty and community development.  They will also be introduced to principles and practices that contribute toward maintaining...

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