Promotion of resilient traditional rice-based farming system in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam

Project value: AUD$ 5,575

From Feb 2022 to 30 June 2022

Resilient traditional rice-based farming system in Chau Thanh District, Kien Giang province, Vietnam, Photo by Mr Le Quoc Viet 2022

The aim of this grant is to provide financial support via a one-off grant from the Rotary Club  of North Balwyn to promote traditional resilient rice-based farming practices that improve biodiversity, nutrition, and provide better income for poor households and the community in Chau Thanh District of Kien Giang province. The funds will be used to deliver three key activities which will be co-implemented by Mekong Organics team and Mr Viet and his community members. Mr Viet is a farmer, but he is also the lead of the farmer association in the district. He has a great network to support other farmers in the district. He collaborates with over 30 farmers to grow and recover traditional rice and he buys paddies from the farmers. Mekong Organics evaluated his business model as innovative and has significant impact to the communities as he performs like a social enterprise that support local farmers and creates a place for education of young students. His work helps the wider community rather than just his business.

The grant is funded through the Rotary Australia World Community Service Project “Organic Farming in the Mekong Delta Vietnam (RAOAF)” and administered by Mekong Organics PTY LTD.

The project has three key activities:

We will invite speakers or trainers to deliver a series of training section to 20 local farmers and young people to adopt traditional rice farming practices, understand biodiversity values, promoting of nutrition, value added processing and digital/social media tools to promote the products. Detailed activities are in Table 1. The training will be hosted in April 2022 at the Mr Viet’s place.

Activity 1.0: Training traditional rice-based farming system practices, nutrition, health, climate resilience, biodiversity, value added product processing, using digital/social media to promote the products on 6th -10th March 2022 – 20 key farmers and young people.
1.1 Invited speaker to train in traditional rice farming system (one day training + practice) – prepare and delivery
1.2 Invited speaker to train in agrobiodiversity (one day training + practice) – prepare and delivery
1.3 invited speaker to train in nutrition and health of the community
1.4 invited speaker to train in training valued added products
1.5 invited speaker to train in using social media to promote the products
1.6 Travel, meals and allowance for 20 local participants/farmers 
1.7. Make a video clip for the training sections
1.8. backdrop/poster print
Working package 01: activities

Activity 2.0: Hosting the community-based organic vegetable gardens for (1) local young people, families, (2) school children and (3) university students and (4) retired groups, and (5) Khmer/ethnic community

Mr Viet has spare land for growing vegetables surrounding his paddy fields that can be used to share for the community to grow organic vegetables for home consumption, education, demonstration, and development outreach for (1) local young people, families, (2) school children and (3) university students and (4) retired groups, and (5) Khmer/ethnic community. Each family or young people or student, or monk will be shared a piece of land (around 30-40 square meter) to grow organic vegetables. We expected to recruit up to 5 to 10 individuals or families to join this initiative. Food is only used for home consumption or shared, not for sales. The members are trained by the Mekong organics team and mentored throughout the farming periods. A short video made to promote this activity in local television, YouTube of Mekong Organics, and Facebook. 

Table 2: Details of activity 2.0

Activity 2.0: Hosting the community-based organic vegetable gardens for (1) local young people, families, (2) school children and (3) university students and (4) retired groups, and (5) Khmer/ethnic community
2.1 Purchase Garden tools and facility (water pipe, rake, ….net, metal, wood flipper, motor engine, weeding machine/tools
2.2 Training of community members about organic vegetable farming
2.3 Make a clip of community organic vegetable farming for dissimilation
2.4 backdrop/poster print
Working package 02: activities

Activity 3.0: Monitoring, evaluation and reporting by Mekong Organics

Project report is due on 31 July 2022.

Key achievement

On 5th April 2022, the project team hosted the meeting to develop a detailed plan for implementing the project from April to 30 June 2022. We also selected 10 participants to join the community organic vegetable gardens which will be established at Mr Le Quoc Viet’s place. This activity will be used as the central point to educate children, young people and other members of the community about organic food production, nutrition, and health.

Photo: Project kick off meeting on 5 April 2022

The first meeting with 10 participants at Mr Tu Viet’s farm – to discuss the need of organic vegetables training and establishing the community – based organic vegetable garden in Cu La village, Chau Thanh District of Kien Giang province, Vietnam. The event was hosted on 14 April 2022.

Mr Viet overviewed about the project

From the first meeting to action

After the fist meeting, we co-identified the needs for training farmers about technical skills, communication, and marketing of the products using the “local best practices”, the Ech Op farm in Long Xuyen. The event is hosted on 21 April 2022.

Participants are attending the training at Ech Op farm in Long Xuyen, An Giang
Participants attended the training at the field site – Ech Op Farm in Long Xuyen, An Giang – learning to make organic fertilizer at the farm using local resources
Farmers are checking the farmers after they were trained at the Ech Op farm
Dr Van Kien Nguyen introduced the organic vegetable gardens “Charnwood Community garden” in Canberra Australia for 10 growers in the project.

Reference:

Project: Organic Farming in the Mekong Delta Vietnam (RAOAF)

https://donations.rawcs.com.au/116-2019-20?fbclid=IwAR1tPXikZUCG9__WyTeWSB1NgfM_fsc7yftk-IgRt3Zn-QUs_Bkzm1AVHsw

Project members

  1. Dr. Van Kien Nguyen (project lead)
  2. Mr. Huynh Ngoc Duc (country coordinator)
  3. Mr Le Quoc Viet (local coordinator)
  4. Mr Le Ngoc Hiep (trainer)
  5. Mr. Nguyen Minh Dang (trainer)
  6. Dr. Le Thi Xa (trainer)
  7. Mr. Truong Thanh Dat (trainer)
  8. Mr. Vo Van Oc (communication officer)
  9. Ms. Pham T. L Phuong (communication officer)
  10. Mr. Pham Tan Dat (trainer)
  11. Mr. Phan Van Dai (media assistant)
  12. Mr. Tran Van Hieu (trainer)
  13. Mr. Nguyen Van Thai (supporter)
  14. Dr. Hoang Han Nguyen (soil advisor)
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