Nearly 70% of West Bengal’s population are villagers where every third person is poor; 70% of them are depends on Agriculture. Climate change has increased vulnerability of the populations with negative impact on Agriculture Production and yield quality. Disasters, like increase of cyclonic events and storm surges and make the state vulnerable. About 42% of the state area is flood prone and and many parts of State suffer water shortage and drought. The impact is creating food insecurity and hunger. Proposed project will inform and capacitate farmers on climate smart and indigenous farming.
What locality or neighborhood will your project focus on?
Baduria, North 24 Parganas, West Bengal, India
Describe the specific population with whom you will be working.
SEVA is working with indigenous vulnerable farmers of North 24 Parganas District since 1986. Population density 2,182 people per sq. km. ; 200 Gram Panchayat, 1582 villages; Cropping intensity 201%; Both in Coastal Saline Zone and New alluvial zone; Per capita water availability as of 2001 CM/ capita 393.6; 33% under BPL category. The District is water scared area. SEVA is trying to educate farmer fraternity of District with organic and smart agriculture. Most of the agriculture area is sown with ground water and using chemical compound. The main crop is paddy and Jute. Most of the Farmers are illiterate and depends market and middlemen. They are avoiding nature any indigenous techniques. The on line support inform them about climate smart farming, its profitability and cost effectiveness
Who else will be on your team to help implement the project?
Asok Ghosh – firstname.lastname@example.org
Subhronil Ganguly – email@example.com
Bolpur Manab Jamin – http://www.bolpurmanabjamin.org
SEVA – http://www.sevakolkata.org
What kinds of news, stories and other content will be created?
Reception- Smallholders are aware of evidence from climate smart agriculture models around the world; Cognition- Smallholders will accept the indigenous process of natural resource management; Reference- Smallholders view the findings as locally applicable and doable within the local context and digital map; Effort- CSA has shaped action, effort made towards adoption; Adoption- CSA will direct influence on the decision making process and the resulting decision of smallholders; Implementation- CSA is translated into practice on the ground; Marketing- market development, mainly through the value chain to local production through additional processing, improved quality or access to new markets, skill and fianance; Impact- Tangible, identifiable benefits from the implementation of CSA policies
What technologies and digital tools do you plan to use in the trainings?
Describe the connections that you or your organization have already established or plan to establish that will contribute to the success of the project.
•Improved access to 3G mobile based CSA advisory services for 500 smallholders of North 24 District;
•Generation and dissemination of evidence on the impact, cost-effectiveness and sustainability of 3G mobile phone based advisory services in CSA; and
•Development of locally relevant content for 3G mobile phone technology based CSA and marketing demands from users.
•Voice calling from experts with Skype or other useful apps with provision of translation to indigenous languages.
•Marketing linkage with vendors, wholesalers, industry as mobile phone access/use is increasing in most regions of the world
•Mobile applications have important cascade effects stimulating growth, entrepreneurship, and productivity throughout the economy as a whole
•Real information on effective solution
How many participants do you think will be trained in your project?
Currently total 842 smallholders from Baduria Block gainfully involved in organic eco-level jute farming. They are cultivating Jute using Organic Manure, Bio-Fertilizer and Organic Pesticides and IPM techniques. This upgraded the quality of Crop about 223.59 Ha. area with least water usage. The approximate production is about 4800 quintal raw jute. With a significant marketing linkage, Ganges Jute Mill and Gloster Jute Mill purchasing whole lot of production with Buy back system. They are directly purchases Jute from the Farmers which avoid the cost of middlemen. The farmers are increase their income by 100%. The Farm Labors (Ultra Poor) also get regular job and wages. This (input-output ratio) CSA jute can sustain long times in the storage and keeps continuity of production in jute mills
Describe which technologies, tools, and media you will focus on when training participants.
* We will get 3G internet supported low cost smart phones (Ranging USD 200 with 3G Dongle)
* Voice supported applications with video calling will be added like Skype, you tube, maps and other weather forecasting tools
(1) mobile phones for farmers to send their feedback (we are experimenting with different ways of doing this), (2) a new software, called ClimMob, to analyze the preference ranking data, and (3) cheap, robust environmental sensors (iButtons), which measure temperature and relative humidity in many different locations. Regarding the mobile phones, we have found that very short telephone interviews with farmers can be a good option to get the feed-back. SMS-based solutions seem to be more difficult. Crowdsourced crop improvement need to be tested.
Describe the facilities where you will hold the workshops.
10 Touch screen mobiles with following specification
2G and 3G Network, 5.5 inch touch screen, 13MP back and 2MP Front Camera, Loudspeaker sound, MEMORY Card slot microSD, up to 32 GB, Internal 8 GB, 1 GB RAM, DATA- GPRS, EDGE Speed HSDPA, 42.2 Mbps, HSUPA, 11.5 Mbps WLAN Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth v2.0; USB microUSB v2.0, USB On-the-go (OTG), Geo-tagging, face detection, panorama, HDR – 1080p@30fps; OS Android OS, v4.2 (Jelly Bean); CPU Quad-core 1.2 GHz; Browser HTML5; FM Radia, GPS Support, Google Search, Maps, Gmail, YouTube, Calendar, Google Talk, Voice Memo; Battery – Li-Po 2600 mAh, VIDEO- Playback, Recording, codecs support, AUDIO- MP3, MIDI, 3GPP, AMR-NB, Wav, WMA, AAC ; sensors- Accelerometer, proximity, Document viewer, Image/video editor, GPU – PowerVR SGX544
What is your current relationship with the community with whom you plan to work? What makes you the most appropriate individual or organization to implement this project?
We are working with this farming community since 1986. We have provided different logistical and technical inputs over the periods. SEVA has already developed capacities of 200 Farmers in Save our Rice Campaign on Desi (Indigenous) Paddy cultivation. It was observed that the farmers are very keen to know the system with low cost methods with adaptation of organic techniques and SRI system of paddy cultivation. The product is climate resilient and profitable for the farmers. Adaptation of SRI system in Indigenous paddy cultivation uplifts the potency of their land as well as low water usage decrease GHG. However they need attitudinal change from use of conventional paddy cultivation as it decreases the bio-diversity an. This had the support of the Asian Rice campaign coordinated by PANAP.
What specific challenges do you expect to face when planning and implementing your project?
We have worked with large number of farming community in the said District. We may face a challenge of problem of “low Resources and more beneficiaries”. To mitigate the problem we will divide the farmers in 10 Groups according to nature of farming, land possession, capacity and literacy. The homogeneous groups will decide over the policy and degree of discussion. We will provide inputs on resource materials, websites, blogs, social media sites and demonstration projects. We will interact with Skype and other voice talking apps for provide capacity building. We will also undertake a capacity building and hand holding support to the farmers and provide them technical now hows. This will ensure participation and equality. Women smallholders will concern with meaningful enrichment.
How will you measure and evaluate the project’s impact, specifically: your primary participants, the wider regional community, or the global digital community?
Impact: Smallholderss manage Climate Smart Agriculture Techniques impact on poverty alleviation in communities through engagement with new online tools, support and funding.
Outcome: A greater number of Smallholders use capacity building tools and online guidence, evidence, practice to improve domain capacity and learn cost effective techniques to achieve stronger interfaces to deliver CRA
Output 1: Maximum number of beneficiaries (500 at a time) will access complete systematic and comparable upgraded digital literacy and moderation from experts and educational institute
Output 2: Increase of CSA yield
Output 3: Technolological empowerment of the poor smallholders
Output 4: Exchange/ Renew and Reuse of Mobile phone can enable large number of beneficiaries with in long period.
If your project were to be selected as a Rising Voices grantee, what would be the general timeline of project activities in 2014?
Selection of Beneficiaries – 15 days (2014 June 1 to June 15)
Capacity building – 30 days ( 2014 June 16 to July 15)
Distribution of 3G enabled touch screen mobile phone 5 days (2014 July 16 to July 20)
Hand holding and technical review of the programme (July 21 to September 21)
Exchange/ Renew/ Reuse of above mentioned phone to other user group (September 22 to September 25)
Hand holding and technical review of the programme (September 26 to November 25)
Continue the process……………………..
Detail a specific budget of up to $2,500 USD for operating costs.
10 touch screen and 3G enabled mobile phones- $ 220 X 10 = $ 2200
Capacity building – $ 0.50 X 500 = $ 250
Travelling expenses – $ 50
Besides the microgrant funding, what other support can Rising Voices provide for your project to ensure its success?
Providing CSA experts Bibliography and communication details
Information about free website and blog development
Climate change related documentations and communication materials
Satellite Climate Maps and digitised pictorials
Disaster mitigation techniques and satellite images of upcoming disasters
CSA success story and models
Society for Equitable Voluntary Actions