Himalica – EU Funded Project To Be Incorporated In Bhutan’s 12th Plan

Email

Himalica has promoted climate-resilient practices, community-based micro planning and sustainable land management in Bhutan.

Himalica Project in Bhutan. (Source: ICIMOD)

 

By Pema Seldon | Business Bhutan

The EU - funded support for rural livelihoods and climate change adaption in the Himalayas (Himalica) program, which has worked in five countries is being considered for Bhutan’s 12th Five Year Plan.

Aims of the Himalica project

Himalica aims to enhance the capacity of national and regional stakeholders for dealing with livelihood development and environmental protection in the Hindu Kush Himalaya (HKH). It also seeks to reduce poverty by increasing resilience and unlocking new livelihood opportunities.

The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), together with various national partners has developed and promoted mountain specific resilient solutions for HKH by combining economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development.

The Himalica pilot project in Bhutan is currently being implemented in the Barshog gewog. A gewog consists of five communities such as the Barshong Toed, Barshong Maed, Gangtokha, Chunyikhang and Toedsang.

The gewog comprises of 249 households with a population of 2,383 people. It focuses on import substitution along value chains such as goat and vegetables (beans, cabbage, onion and ginger) which were selected through a consultative process.

Moreover, Himalica in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forests (MoAF) has developed climate-resilient value chains for fresh vegetables and goat rearing. It also reappraises the country’s approach to organic agriculture.

In addition, Himalica assesses poverty and vulnerability by examining the ecosystems in Barshong gewog under the Tsirang dzongkhag.  

According to the GNH survey 2013, the Tsirang dzongkhags has a lower general literacy rate, lower mean annual household income and higher unemployment than the national average.

Through the Himalica project, the average income of beneficiary households increased by Nu 42,936, out of which vegetable farming accounted for Nu 14, 142.

Trainings provided by Himalica

The project has also arranged exposure trips on goat farming and vegetables production for farmers and held trainings on value chain analysis enterprise development, beekeeping management and spring water protection.

So far, 45 member goat farmers’ groups were formed and had themselves registered at the district level.

Some of the key interventions made so far are the identification of farmers to be involved in goat and vegetables value chains in Barshong. It also conducted a demonstration of sustainable land management practices and constructed bio-digesters in each community in the gewog.

Under the Himalica initiative, the royal society for the protection of nature (RSPN), with technical support from the ICIMOD also carried out a study to understand the state and dynamics of the ecosystems and their services in Barshog as well as their nexus with human well-being.

Multi-dimensional poverty and livelihood vulnerability assessment were also conducted to understand and document various dimensions of poverty and livelihood vulnerability.

This is expected to provide clues about the differences in the intensity and composition of poverty across six selected districts (Bumthang, Paro, Samdrup Jongkhar, Samtse, Trashiyangtse and Tsirang).

This information will also be useful for decision makers who need to identity intervention areas and guide measures to reduce vulnerability. 

Himalica promotes beekeeping

The project is also promoting beekeeping and honey value chain analysis. As honeybees improve agricultural productivity, Himalica supported the integration of beekeeping as a livelihood diversification option in Tsirang, where nearly one-fifth of the households keep native bees in traditional hives.

After assessing the feasibility and potential for beekeeping development in the area, Himalica also identified enterprising youth and farmers including women, who were interested in taking up beekeeping.

The training and exposure plus learning visits were arranged to encourage improved beekeeping management.

Till date, Himalica has promoted climate-resilient practices, community-based micro planning and sustainable land management to empower more than 200 rural households.

 

This article first appeared in Business Bhutan and has been edited for the Daily Bhutan.

 


Related Posts

Eastern Farmers Cashing In On Watermelon Cultivation

Farmers said that growing watermelons is easier than cultivating other cash crops like chillies and potatoes, since...

Jan 28, 2018 16:34

Integrated Farming Popular Among Civil Servants

“It provides an opportunity for civil servants to participate in a healthy recreational activity and produce their own...

Apr 04, 2018 12:31

Youth Farming Cooperative in Chhukha

The cooperative invested in farming cardamom and off-season vegetables cultivation to meet the demands in the urban...

Feb 10, 2018 17:21

Demand for Bhutanese Honey Encourages Farmers To Take Up...

Bhutan’s organic honey is highly sought after for its fine quality.

Apr 16, 2018 00:31

Farmers in Samtse Ready To Reap Quinoa

Farmers in Samtse are gearing up to harvest quinoa, a new crop which they started cultivating on a small scale as a...

Jan 18, 2018 07:18

Denmark to Support Bhutan’s Organic Agriculture

Bhutan officially launched the policy for organic farming in 2007 and proclaimed the intention to become a fully organic...

Oct 24, 2017 14:50

Latest

News

Dharma King of Bhutan augment enormous respect for the magnanimity and compassionate act during Lockdown.

And nation strengthens solidarity during Lockdown period.

Aug 14, 2020 00:31

Bhutan imposes nationwide COVID-19 lockdown

Bhutan is currently on lockdown, an unprecedented event in Bhutan's recent history.

Aug 12, 2020 15:53

Features

View from the Sky For Every Travellers Flying into Bhutan

Despite Boeing ranking Paro airport as 'one of the world's most difficult for takeoffs and landings, the views over the clear blue waters...

Aug 06, 2020 14:25

Thousands of Bhutanese signed up as DeSuups during COVID-19 Pandemic

While COVID-19 pandemic has brought a lot of inconveniences, challenges, and uncertainties to individuals, it did not deter the Bhutanese to...

Aug 04, 2020 15:45

Sports

Football clubs in Bhutan gearing up for Bhutan Premier League (BPL) 2020

Bhutan Premier League (BPL), the top national football tournament in Bhutan is set to commence on August 1.

Jul 24, 2020 14:33

Karma – Female Archer From Bhutan Qualified For Tokyo 2020 Olympic Quota

Karma has been specialising in Olympics-style archery since 2009.

Nov 30, 2019 13:18

Business

Are Local Vendors Earning More Money Than the Civil Servant?

A Farmer from Lango, Paro gave up farming to be vendor while office goers are switching into agriculture as the remedy to curb their...

Jul 27, 2020 19:15

Once the booming Handicraft Shops in Paro Dying- Paro Today

Paro town looks so different in its history as tourist destination in Bhutan.

Jun 24, 2020 16:58

Travel

The Longest Urban Hiking Trail from PangriZampa to Lungtenphu, Thimphu

This trail is a less explored pocket of paradise for trekkers and wanderers who are in search of natures hospitality and solitude away from...

Aug 05, 2020 10:40

Tomorrow is the Most Auspicious Day of the Year at Paro Taksang.

Even before the gilded door to this holy site is open, pilgrims from all walks of life from all over the country flock to Paro to hike up...

Jul 19, 2020 20:53

Lifestyle

Food on Wheels- First of its kind in Bhutan

The World's Largest Fast Food Restaurant Chains doesn't exist in Bhutan.

Mar 04, 2020 09:39

Amazing Stories from the Eastern Part of Bhutan

You can't say you have visited the eastern part of Bhutan unless you have experienced the following bizarre things.

Mar 02, 2020 19:02

Subscribe to our newsletter

Never miss out on new happenings and news stories!

Download Daily Bhutan Mobile App

Connecting with us just got easier!