The Green Shoots Foundation (GSF)

Photo credit: Food Tank

Students work on a rice paddy as part of the Green Shoots Foundation’s Food & Agriculture and Social Entrepreneurship initiative.
Photo by: Mike Kear

Growing A Future: The Green Shoots Foundation Works to Empower Cambodian Youth through Agriculture

The Green Shoots Foundation (GSF) works in six different countries throughout Asia, including Cambodia, the Philippines, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Kyrgyzstan. GSF’s work, along with programs targeting healthcare and education, include a dynamic initiative developed over the last few years, called the Food & Agriculture and Social Entrepreneurship (FASE) program. Two projects currently underway in Cambodia are gaining momentum and recognition in the region for their unique combination of agriculture, peer education, and community building. Head of Monitoring& Evaluation for GSF, Muneezay Jaffery, highlights the ways in which these FASE initiatives are engaging young people in an effort to secure the future of sustainable agriculture in rural communities in Southeast Asia.

The two most noteworthy programs are targeted at educating rural communities about the immediate and long-term benefits of sustainable agriculture. The first, in North West Cambodia, Jaffery explains is “assisting with the management of a 5.5 hectare rice field for an education center run by local partners Enfants du Mekong.” Despite initial skepticism from the local farmers, GSF and local partner, Enfants du Mekong have demonstrated the real-time value of sustainable agricultural practices, which Jaffery describes as “mixed cropping/co-cultivation” and “integrated pest management”.  Through the use of these sustainable practices, GSF’s rice field is producing increasingly tremendous yields, which is surprising local farmers and inspiring more involvement from community members. These yields not only provide opportunities for education, as Cambodian youth learn about how to use natural farming methods, but also provide the chance for young people to experiment with agricultural entrepreneurship and how to manage agriculture-based business.

Read the full article: Food Tank

Asian cooperation to combat desertification

Photo credit: Mongolia Newswire

Asian nations work together to stop desertification



Asian countries, including Korea, China, Cambodia and Mongolia, have joined forces to combat desertification and to beef up cooperation in the forestry sector.

As part of a series of joint efforts, the Korea Forest Service and the secretariat of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) jointly held their Asian Region Workshop in Songdo, Incheon, on May 7, 2014.

Throughout the three-day workshop, more than 90 representatives from UNCCD branches across the Asian and Pacific regions reviewed reports on desertification from Asian countries, especially those heavily struck by land degradation. They also held in-depth discussions on how to deal with the problem.

Similar efforts are underway in other Asian nations, such as Indonesia and Mongolia, as well.

The Korea-Mongolia Greenbelt Forestation Project is an anti-desertification effort being made in Mongolia, a country with 70 percent of its territory at risk of desertification.

The project, initiated in 2007, has had millions of poplar trees planted throughout the Lun Soum region and the Gobi Desert. With the effort, a 3000-hectare forest will have been created in the area by 2016.

Read the full article: M.A.D.

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