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VIVA Nepal

VIVA Nepal

In August, Ciaran Gobl, a vet from Co. Longford, took over from Susan Griffin as VIVA's representative in Nepal. Working with our partner organisation, AHTCS (Animal Health Training and Consultancy Service), Ciaran will oversee the implementation of our project there working with 15 farmer groups in the Kaski district. Ciaran reports below on the progress of this project and his initial impressions of Nepal. VIVA would also like to thank Susan Griffin for her contribution to VIVA's work over her year in Nepal.

Ciaran reports from Pokhara

Following the dedicated work of my predecessor Susan Griffin, VIVA is now an officially recognized International NGO here in Nepal. The new project, Community Livestock Production Strengthening Project (CLPSP) is co-funded by VIVA and Bóthar. It incorporates two previously separate projects namely, the Women Empowerment and Animal Nutrition Management projects.

In Nepal, over 70% of the population depends on agriculture as a source of income. 90% of all the farming work is done by the women in the family. 15 groups, predominantly female, have been selected in 6 very needy areas of the Kaski district for the CLPSP project which aims to improve the socio-economic status of all the participants involved by increasing the productivity from their farms. We will achieve this by empowering them with the training and management skills they require. The project is now in the full implementation phase but only with the diligent efforts of the AHTCS (Animal Health Training and Consultancy Services), our partner here in Pokhara. All the groups have taken part in group management and animal management training courses. Also, nine Village Animal Health Workers (VAHW) have undergone intensive training and are working in the field, providing basic animal health services, not only to the group members, but also to local farmers. By the end of the first project year (May 2009), we plan to have trained the participants in shed construction and management, improved animal nutrition and distributed improved breeding stock to all the groups. Nepal is a beautiful country where one wakes up to the Himalayas at your doorstep. The country's troubled past is easing into a new era of beginning. We have planted the seeds of hope thanks to our supporters in Ireland, and soon we will reap the fruits that the people deserve. It is a pleasure to work here and I only hope that I can give as much as I am gaining! You can follow my progress here on my blog – http://vivanepal.blogspot.com/