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To assist the poorest to achieve sustainable access to resources so as to realize their livelihoods rights without damage to natural resources and the environment.
MAIN PROCESSES & ACTIONS
Improving livestock production through increasing farmer knowledge and skill and support to Community Animal Health Worker (CAHW) support system. Conduct an assessment of the strengths and gaps of livestock technical supports to existing communities where KMSS is working will be carried out by an expert livestock consultant. The assessment will be carried out in 11 targeted villages, and will also include recommendations for common areas for strengthening. The KMSS livestock supports to communities will be carried out mainly through Community Animal Health Workers (CAHWs) in line with Dept of Animal Health & Husbandry. Action will also be to do the following: to coordinate with 11 targeted dioceses to identify existing and establish new CAHWs, to ensure that CAHWs are receiving training supports, to facilitate links between CAHWs and Village Tract and Township level Animal Health Depts
Improving access to water for food production
Coordinate with 8 targeted dioceses for conducting a technical assessment of existing structures (strengths, weaknesses, lessons learned, etc). Discuss and identify existing issues. Improve KMSS NO/DO staff understanding through training and exposure visits to successful projects. Agree guidelines and procedures for establishing water infrastructures (i.e. with communities, access permission by local government, etc). Develop and apply strategy to establish Water User Groups to maintain water infrastructure, to lobby to local govt, etc. Support DOs to develop project proposals to secure short-term funds for access to water for communities. Ensure there is technical support provided to staff and communities for design and implementation of water projects. Assist DOs to develop short term proposals for establishing small water infrastructure for access to water for agriculture production.
Strengthening the supports on Microfinance & Savings Groups
Coordinate with 11 targeted dioceses with existing savings and loans activities. Facilitate joint discussions for identifying success and existing issues and agree guidelines and procedures for common microfinance and savings groups practices to target communities. Identify common areas for strengthening staff skills. Ensure there is trainings and technical supports provided to staff for design and implementation. Agree a number of monitoring indicators microcredit and savings groups. Support staff on collecting data on existing and new savings groups to be collected for baseline and monitoring. Based on shared experiences develop Best Practices on Microcredit and Savings, and common Microfinance Policy
Establishing Market Approaches in the Livelihood programming
Continue to provide trainings to staff in 6 dioceses on product selection, value chain analysis, and assessment of market solutions for value chains of 4 selected products (sesame, corn, pig, and banana). Form village Value Chain Groups and provide leadership and agri production skills for their product. Ensure trainings to staff on how to partner with providers who can help to solve the market constraints for poor farmers. Discuss with key market actors and establish contractual agreements with them to work together to address one or two key constraints for each value chain. Assist the Value Chain Groups from several villages to become Producer Associations for stronger voice and leverage for their product. Develop plans to include other two dioceses to begin after 2014.
RELEVANCE OF THE ACTION
Agricultural production is characterized by farming households with smallholdings which strive to produce much of their food through a combination of crop cultivation, livestock raising and harvesting common forest and fishery resources for food. These households suffer seasonal food shortages. They seek out cash income to meet basic daily needs, but typically confront low productivity and high risks in food production;
Compounding this are the large areas of farmland that are affected by severe degradation which is causing major nutrient loss and soil erosion. Livestock production is not well supported in its raising technique, animal health, feeding, and quality stock. Limited land resources which affect more to landless and small scale farmers. Community received support for production but no effective linkages to market. Improved access to savings and credit activities (from formal and informal sources) is urgently needed by vast numbers of poor in order for them to start up or strengthen their livelihoods activities.
Increased production of livestock (poultry, pigs, goat, milking cow, etc) as result of farmers improved knowledge on animal husbandry and thru support from strongly established CAHW support systems. Better access to water for irrigation thru ponds, dams, piping systems, canals, etc (managed by water user groups) results in boosts in production. Improved availability to credit as result of stronger working savings and loans groups. Stronger links of four products to markets. The committees and associations formed by SGs and VCGs have more solidarity and confidence to voice their needs. Common guidelines developed in the area of market approach, land use, livestock breeding, support to microfinance and savings groups, and supporting communities to improve access to water for food production improve learnings for KMSS and communities.
Improved supports for livestock raising and microfinance/savings supports in 11 DOs. Increased ability in 8 dioceses to support communities to access and manage water for production. Staff and communities benefiting as result of support for 4 value chains in four dioceses.
Organize meeting six monthly among the Livelihoods Subcommittee
In order to continue to improve our analysis and learnings of the impact of our ongoing livelihood security interventions conduct the Livelihoods Subcommittee meetings with members including Joseph Myint Thaung (NO) and 1 representative each per diocese. First meetings at MDY, second meeting TNGU, third meeting PK, and fourth meeting LKW. Assisting in implementation and ensuring monitoring based on Results Framework. Reporting back to the KMSS members of Steering Committee or Directors Board as needed.
All of the above actions in the livelihoods section will need the leadership of a national staff Livelihoods Coordinator in the KMSS NO. Support for this position is also put for considerations.