Project objectives and outcomes
The objective of the 'Maternal and child health project" is to support relocated communities to establish vegetable gardens to increase their nutritional status, especially for children under five and pregnant women.
SurfAid is working with the Mentawai Agricultural Department to deliver this through training in soil assessment, testing, and soil improvement techniques. Over the next few years, further work will be done to prepare communities for income generation from surplus vegetables.
SurfAid is working in nine villages located in inland South Pagai, Mentawai Islands, that were relocated after the 2010 tsunami. Transportation and logistics in this region are challenging at the best of times as these photos show.
Loading the motor bikes and supplies on a local canoe in Sikakap to get across the channel to South Pagai. It was another 50km on the motorbike along a dirt track to get to the communities relocated after the 2010 tsunami.
The village of Kinumbuk.
To improve nutritional status through agricultural activities, the following project activities were undertaken:
- Training on soil assessment/testing
- Conducting a soil assessment in each of the nine villages to see if the soil is suitable for growing vegetables.
- Training on soil improvement techniques
- Creating 'Demonstration Gardens' of best practice - We work to the catch phrase Healthy soil, Healthy Food, Healthy People (Tanah yang Sehat, Makanan Sehat, Orang Sehat)
SurfAid consultant Matt King, from GreenEarth Development, conducts the training on soil assessment, testing and improvement techniques in Kinumbuk, South Pagai.
Mentawai Agricultural Department staff Sumardi, Pak Felix and Tarman assess soil samples from the village of Sabbieret.
Members of the Mentawai Agricultural Department work with SurfAid to build a demonstration garden in Kinumbuk.
What's next for this project?
SurfAid Country Director Anne Wuijts said the next steps will include starting a seed nursery to ensure all families can start a nutrition garden, and setting up demonstration gardens at the local health facility to integrate gardening into the nutrition education for pregnant woman and children.
"Once all these elements are in place, we are confident we will see a positive change in nutrition status for pregnant women and children over the next 12 months," Wuijts said.
Photos by : Matt King / SurfAid
Project objectives and outcomes
The objective is to support 9 relocated communities in South Pagai, Mentawai Islands, to establish vegetable gardens to increase their nutritional status, especially for children under five and pregnant women, and prepare for income generation.
This objective is aligned with MDG 4 - Reducing Child mortality and MDG 5 - Improving maternal health (see more on the United Nation's MDGs)
The project outcomes will consist of:
- Vegetable gardens that will lead to an improved nutritional status, especially for children under five and pregnant women.
- A seedling nursery in the communities will help families to create home vegetable gardens.
- At the same time, through training and learning by doing, increased technical agricultural knowledge and practices will be an outcome that will prepare the communities for income generation in the future.
- During the lifespan of the project different families will receive and cultivate different seeds and vegetables, so surplus vegetables can be traded with other families or communities.
Photo: A village in South Pagai
This project funding will cover
- Assessment of land to choose the right vegetables for growing.
- Material development for training on vegetable growing
- Provision of vegetable seeds for 13 communities
NZ-based GreenEarth Development will assist with assessments and technical know-how.
Part of a larger project:
This project fits in the Long-Term Post Tsunami Community Recovery in Mentawai Islands Program. By the end of this Program, SurfAid will have:
1. Provided sustainable clean water facilities that will be managed by community water committees, worked with communities to build latrines and implemented hand washing campaigns, leading to Improved hygiene and sanitation practices (Outcome 1).
2. Established functional basic health care services (Posyandu) together with the Mentawai Department of Health, through training and coaching staff and community health volunteers, leading to Improved access to and quality of community health services in each target community (Outcome 2)
3. Established family vegetable gardens, small-scale chicken farms and a demonstration nutrition garden at the Puskesmas (sub-district health centre) and trained Mentawai Department of Agriculture, Plantation and Animal Husbandry staff leading to improved nutritional status and preparedness for commercial activities (Outcome 3)
Photo: Mothers and children at the Bulasat Puskesmas (health clinic) in South Pagai