Caritas Nepal peer exchange and learning visit to Caritas Indonesia

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  • Sharmila Pun
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Seven staff from Caritas Nepal participated in the peer exchange and learning visit to Caritas Indonesia from 23rd to 29th February 2020 under European Asian Partnership for Building Capacities in Humanitarian Action (PEACH) II project. This is a consortium program of Caritas Austria, Caritas Czech Republic, Caritas Romania, Caritas Nepal, Caritas India, Caritas Pakistan Caritas Myanmar, Caritas Philippines, Caritas Bangladesh, Caritas Indonesia and Caritas Mongolia. The sole purpose of the visit was to learn about disaster risk reduction (DRR) and climate change adaptation (CCA) programs in Indonesia.

The team visited the project sites in Magepanda, Done and Reroraja villages which was assisted by Caritas Diocese of Maumere in the program of Partners for Resilience (PfR) supported by Cordaid. Drought is an extreme and frequent event in the above-mentioned village and it adversely affects the livelihood of the farming community. They have been experiencing insufficient rainfall, resulting in reducing surface water body and, consequently, water shortages for agricultural and other uses. The team interacted with local communities, green warriors and Government officers, the purpose of this interaction was to know farmers’ coping strategies for droughts by identifying which strategies are used and the influencing factors. Farmers in this region have been adapting some measures through their own efforts, which should be acknowledged and enhanced through necessary research and extension.

Photo Credit : Sharmila Pun and Yohanes Basskoro

“There are 5 rainfall gauzes installed in this (Magepanda) village in every 5km, that record the rainfall data after every 24hrs to predict the paddy planting time. We even have the rainfall harvesting system to conserve the water for drinking purposes” shared a local leader to Caritas team. The team was impressed by the infiltration well, (sumur jebakan) constructed by the communities based on local indigenous knowledge. Infiltration wells were very effective to increase the level of groundwater. Team also visited the Gomo Fai spring in Done Village which was managed by the local community by planting vegetation around it. The community are encouraged to plant trees to conserve water resources for domestic purpose.

Discussion Meeting with Caritas Nepal and CaritasMaumere team
Photo Credit : Sharmila Pun

One of the main causes of soil abrasion in the shore was due to the sea, which was later intervened with hybrid technology. This technology incorporated the planting of mangrove trees and building barriers slowing down the cutting forces of the waves.

Laxmi Raj Joshi, Program Manager of Caritas Nepal, also shared the experiences of Caritas Nepal in empowering the community to recover, strengthen the resilience of people and participate in overall development affected by disasters such as Earthquake, Landslides, and Floods working closely in coordination with local government bodies and community together.

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