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Better Health, Life, & Happiness

Residents of Tobang and Metrang in the Ichchhyakamana Province See Increased Production of Produce, Cash Crops

Agriculture is essential for Nepal’s economic success. In fact, 60.4 percent of the total population in Nepal is involved in agriculture according to the National Planning Commission. Despite the necessity of agriculture for the Nepali economy, the locals and plants are mainly rain-fed. This means that agriculture is entirely reliant on the amount of rain the country gets per year; therefore, in extreme conditions of drought or flooding, the production of crops is threatened. Even slightly erratic rainfall causes issues. How will families survive without drinking water or food if the crops fail?

Suga Kumari Chepang, a resident of Metrang, recalls the days of everyday survival. During times of extreme weather, her family had no vegetables or healthy food. Eating only to fill her stomach, the food was not maintaining Suga’s health.

After the installation of tap stands for everyone in the two communities of Metrang and Tobang, the community now grows seasonal vegetables like beans, peas, tomatoes, and cucumbers easily and efficiently. Other vegetables include mustard, cauliflower, chilies, capsicum, and spinach, which are sometimes off season. While families save some vegetables for themselves, they also sell them in the nearest market. This also includes cash crops including oranges.

Jhamka Bahadur Magar, a resident of Tobang community, always relied on water sources that were contaminated or scarce. After the water access project, the water supply vastly improved, and Jhamka shifted from subsistence agricultural farming to commercial agriculture. Now, he grows various crops like tomatoes, cucumbers, and other seasonal and off-season vegetables.

Beneficial, too, is that this project created an opportunity for climate-resilient agriculture. This includes genetically modified rice, which withstands monsoons and droughts, through climate change-related adaptations. This empowers the local community as role models in the agro-entrepreneurs field and promotes their role in sustainable food systems and irrigated agricultural value chains.

Before clean water access, the crops dried up and died frequently due to the contaminated water. Now, increased crop production along with increased income allows for a more balanced diet, higher productivity, and the entire community has a better quality of life! In addition, this community is a leader in sustainable agriculture, making them important leaders in the movement towards climate-resilient agriculture!


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