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200,000 poor farmers' livelihoods improved

Update: December, 18/2015 - 17:03
Farmers harvest rice in their field in Mekong Delta An Giang Province. — Photo

HA NOI (VNS) — The livelihoods of 200,000 poor farmers in 13 provinces, including Quang Binh, An Giang and Soc Trang, have improved since 2012.

The improvements were made under the Community Based Climate Change Action Grant Programme to help farmers adapt to the effects of climate change. A total of AUD15 million (US$10.7 million), funded by the Australian government via a partnership of seven non-governmental organisations over three years, was provided as part of the programme.

Nguyen Thi Nguyet, 46, of Dai Trach Commune in central Quang Binh Province, said her rice harvest output had doubled with the new cultivation techniques.

Nguyet collected 300kg of rice, planted over 500sqm of land each month, instead of the 150kg she had collected in the past, she said.

"So my family's income from rice production has also doubled." She earns some VND500,000 (US$22) per 100kg of rice sold, she added.

Tran Thi Kim Chi, head of the Women's Association in Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta An Giang Province, said local farmers, especially women, were starting to learn about climate change and how its impact could disrupt their lives.

The farmers learnt how to use dried straw to plant mushrooms and feed cows and buffaloes instead of burning the straw, creating greenhouse gas emissions, she said.

Tran Quang Hoai, deputy director of the Department of Water Resources under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, at the closing ceremony of the programme yesterday said that public awareness of climate change had increased alongside the livelihoods of poor farmers, even though the developments of climate change were complicated.

Hoai said the programme's results were greatly appreciated because Viet Nam was one of the countries suffering the most from climate change.

Australian Ambassador to Viet Nam Hugh Borrowman said Australia was strongly committed to addressing the impacts of climate change.

Lessons from the programme concerning the creation of better links between farmers and the private sector and the promotion of women's participation in decision-making will be particularly relevant in adopting new strategies, he said.

The programme was divided into a variety of projects controlled by the partnerships of seven NGOs, including CARE International in Viet Nam. — VNS

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