Adopt a Village

ISET Nepal, with support from DanChurchAid, is implementing a project called “Adopt a Village” in Bakhrigaun of Changunarayan Municipality.  The project supports livelihood activity in the village. The details follow:

Bakhrigaun Background

Bakhrigaun is about 29.5 km from Kathmandu, near Nagarkot in Changunarayan Municipality, ward number 6. The village has a population of 335, distributed among 68 households.

These households are set across six distinct toles or communities: Karki Tole, Puchhar Tole, Baghsingh Tole, Pasal Danda, Thing Tole, and Pandit Tole. The Tamang ethnic group constitutes much of the community, while only one family belongs to the Dalit ethnic group.

The majority of the households in this village are heavily involved in agriculture and poultry. However, these crops do not suffice for year-round food consumption and are susceptible to destruction by wild animals, particularly wild boars.

Need assessment of the village shows that women and youths face a lower quality of life and are prone to various challenges due to factors such as lack of assets, economic opportunities, access to services, and lifesaving skills, as well as social exclusion and marginalization, increasing their vulnerabilities.

Community members lack proper knowledge of vegetable production and market access. Moreover, the community faces serious challenges due to wild animals feeding on and destroying agricultural crops.

To address these challenges, ISET-Nepal and DCA decided to support agriculture inputs for sustainable farming, build farmers’ capacities on sustainable farming, and provide business start-up support for enterprise development, market development, enterprise development, and preparedness and response training to enhance farmers’ resilience to climate change and other hazards. This is expected to empower community members, especially women and youths.

Tunnel Farming
The project aims to address the agricultural challenges faced by the community, enhance food security, and empower the local population through tunnel farming. The tunnel farm provides the following benefits to the local people: lower start-up costs, longer growing and marketing seasons, better ability to grow cold-hardy vegetables, reduced chances of disease infestation, less wind stress and sunlight that can damage plants, etc. 10 tunnels were built. ISET also provided training to the local farmers to equip them with the knowledge and skills required to adopt modern farming practices, which have had a transformative impact on the village’s agricultural productivity. By introducing tunnel farming, the growing season has been extended, ensuring a year-round food supply and significantly increasing crop yields. This initiative will not only improve the livelihoods of the farmers but also contribute to the overall development of the village. By addressing the agricultural challenges faced by the community, tunnel farming will empower the villagers to take control of their food security and economic well-being.

Renovation of community building
The project renovated one community building, and the structural issues were addressed and repaired to improve safety. This was highly prioritized because the building and space on the premises could be one of the potential areas for developing shelter and relief management space during the disaster. As an important part of open space, ISET-Nepal constructed a toilet/restroom in the community building to ensure proper sanitation. The facility is now accessible to diverse groups, including children, women, the elderly, pregnant women, and persons with disabilities.

To maintain the greenery of the open space, the project planted locally identified tree varieties on the premises and lined them with steel nets so that they would not be destroyed by passersby or animals.

Danish Volunteers
Volunteers from Silkeborg, Denmark, visited Bakhrigaun. They lodged in the Tamang community households for a month and immersed themselves in village life’s daily rhythms and realities. They designed home gardens, renovated buildings, and participated in social ceremonies, fostering deeper connections and understanding of the local villagers.

The volunteers also dug a recharge pond to act like a check dam in one of the sites to reduce landslides and recharge groundwater.