Organization: The Initiatives on Community Empowerment for Rural Development (ICERD)
Partner since: 2007
In-country Director: Ngo Tien Dung
Over 80% of Vietnamese people are employed in agriculture. There is now a pronounced struggle between traditional and modern approaches to farming as Vietnamese farmers are finding that they have to deal with increasingly unstable environments and the influence of industrialism. There is an apparent lack of understanding as to how to effectively and safely adapt agricultural practices so that neither financial gain nor health will be sacrificed.
In 2014-2015 Vietnam has had particular success with trainings on how to raise and profit from rice-fish as well as on making and using biomats to improve environmental conditions. The results achieved in 2014 showed that in the rice-fish and aquatic animal conservation field farmers saved 50-80% of cost by reducing pesticide use. Profits of these farmers increased by four times in comparison to the profits of farmers using conventional farming methods. Two women’s groups in Bac Giang studied and produced organic fertilizer by making biomats from chicken dung, pig dung, and other biomass.
Woman and students growing vegetables in home gardens is another way for poor families to obtain a variety of nutrient-rich foods at low cost. Projects conducted in Vietnam have encouraged farmers to grow vegetables in home gardens for family consumption and to create home-based employment for women who can process and preserving perishable vegetables in order to continue to generate revenue during low seasons.
With support and encouragement from TFA, ICERD has developed an agreement with the Continuing Education Department and Secondary Education Department within the Ministry of Education & Training to integrate agrobiodiversity and pesticide risk reduction into the national curriculum and as well as into the educational materials for the Continuing Learning Centers throughout Vietnam.