www.asianfarmers.org

Website of the Asian Farmers Association for Sustainable Rural Development

March 23rd, 2015

Fighting Hunger through Partnerships: A Forum on Brazil’s Zero Hunger Program, Global Institutional Purchase, and the Philippines’ Partnership Against Hunger Project

bannerHow about increasing farmers/fishers’ income by 10-50% by combining nutrition and livelihood objectives through local sourcing of agri-fishery products from farmers/fishers’ organizations and institutional purchase by school and DSWD’s feeding program?

The Pambansang Kilusan ng mga Samahang Magsasaka (PAKISAMA), in cooperation with Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA) and Collectif Strategies Alimentaire ( CSA), will hold a forum on Fighting Hunger through Partnerships on March 24, 2015 at the Institute for Social Order (ISO), Ateneo de Manila University, Quezon City, Philippines.

The forum hopes to provide a venue for representatives from government agencies, non-government organizations, research institutes, academe and particularly farmers’ organizations to exchange views and experiences on institutional purchase in the context of fighting hunger. In addition, the forum also hopes to provide space for networking and partnership building among various stakeholders leading to concrete areas for cooperation.

Experiences from Brazil’s Zero Hunger Program and the Philippines’ Partnership Against Hunger Project as well as global institutional purchase initiatives shall be highlighted. Resource persons from Brazil and Belgium will be joining to share their experiences.

March 13th, 2015

Video: Grassroots Foresight Training Workshop

video grassroots foresight training workshop

 

Click here to watch the video

 

Related Stories:

Farmer organizations learn participatory grassroots foresight for their communities

Empowering local organisations through foresight

AFA, GFAR conduct training workshop on grassroots foresight

March 12th, 2015

Soils for life (Farming Matters, March 2015)

soils for life farming matters 2015Healthy soils contribute to resilient food production. Soil carbon is a key to healthy soils but, today we see the long-term consequences of agricultural management that has neglected soil carbon – degraded soils, polluted waters, and unprecedented rates of hunger and malnutrition. There are good examples of agroecological practices that were developed by farmers who have long known the importance of soil carbon. Yet, in many cases these practices are being re-learnt, adapted and new practices are being developed to reconnect with the soil and rebuild soil carbon.

This issue of Farming Matters presents the experiences of farmers who are working successfully, together with others, to improve the health of their soil and their lives. The stories on these pages show that healthy soils increase farmers’ autonomy and long-term productivity. And, healthy soils also contribute to climate change adaptation and mitigation. We see that farmers are making use of local resources to build soil carbon, and in the process they are reducing their dependence on external inputs. This issue makes a call to listen to farmers and learn from their experiences on the land.

Click here to read the issue

March 11th, 2015

“Pamilyang Magsasaka” (IYFF Philippines Theme song with English sub-titles)

March 6th, 2015

Vicente “Ka Vic” Arraya Fabe (11 September 1956 – 2 March 2015)

ka vic in memoriam (banner) small

 

The body of farmer-leader Vicente “Ka Vic” Fabe has been brought to Manila to enable friends and colleagues in the farmers and social movement to pay their last respects. On March 6, 6:00 PM, a mass will be held at Santa Maria della Strada Parish Church, Pansol Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City. On March 7, 6:00 PM, another mass will be held followed by a tribute. The body will be brought back his hometown in Quezon province on March 8. The last wake will be on March 9, while the burial is on March 10.

Click here to download a short bio of Vicente “Ka Vic” Fabe

March 6th, 2015

Former AFA Treasurer and PAKISAMA Chairperson passes away

Dear AFA Members and Partners,

It is with deepest sorrow to inform you that Mr. Vicente Fabe, known to many of us as Ka Vic , ex-Chairperson of Pakisama, ex-Treasurer of AFA, died while having his afternoon nap yesterday, March 2, at his home in Sta Elena, Camarines Norte, about 257 kms away from Manila. We deeply mourn this sudden loss, the movement is poorer with his passing.

Many colleagues in the farmers movement in the Philippines have seen him grow as a young shy farmer in the late 1980’s to a highly respected, highly admired, staunch, fearless leader of the farmers’ movement in the Philippines. He has been a great inspiration to many , including us in the AFA secretariat, He thinks sharply, he argues soundly, and he creates poems spontaneously. Despite his various positions in government and CSO coalitions as farmer representative, he has remained simple, humble, unwavering and committed to the cause, always eager to serve and to improve his service for his fellow farmers. As a farmer leader, he has led many of Pakisama’s campaigns on land rights , sustainable agriculture, significant involvement in governance processes on agriculture, gender equality, and the recovery of the coconut levy funds. His last activity at the national level was his participation in the 3rd national coconut farmers conference a week ago, last Feb 25.

As the longest-standing member of the AFA Execom until 2013, his principles and skills in coalition work has helped position AFA in many networking activities as well as helped AFA decide soundly on many of its organizational matters .

For those of you who have FB accounts, you can look at the posts of Jun Virola to remember Ka Vic.

We ask for your prayers . We will appreciate any tribute to Ka Vic, as well as any support you might be willing to give for his bereaved wife and children.

Kind regards,

esther*

Click here to download a short bio of Vicente “Ka Vic” Fabe

February 23rd, 2015

Farmer organizations learn participatory grassroots foresight for their communities

The Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA) and the Global Forum on Agricultural Research (GFAR) co-organized a workshop on empowering local organizations through foresight last February 2-7 in Quezon City, Philippines.

The workshop was attended by representatives from AFA, its member organizations Aliansi Petani Indonesia(API), Pambansang Kilusan ng Samahang Magsasaka (PAKISAMA) in the Philippines, and the Institute of Himalayan Environmental Research and Education (INHERE) in India.

Facilitating the workshop was Robin Bourgeois, Senior Foresight and Development Policies Expert at the GFAR Secretariat, who is working on strengthening GFAR’s role in foresight and for providing an open and multi-stakeholder space for dialogue and action on the future of agricultural research.

Click here for the blog report at the GFAR website
Click here for related news story at AFA website

February 16th, 2015

AFA Chairperson and Secretary General visit Aliansi Petani Indonesia

February 16th, 2015

Family farmers should be at the heart of all agriculture, food security and nutrition agendas

iyff penunia(Note: The appointment of all IYFF special ambassadors are renewed for the 2015 International Year of Soils ).

Interview with Ms. Estrella Penunia, International Year of Family Farming Special Ambassador

Ms. Estrella Penunia, or Esther, as she is known to colleagues, is Secretary General of the Asian Farmers’ Association (AFA), a regional alliance of national farmers organizations or FOs in Asia. Established in 2002, AFA is currently composed of fifteen national FOs in twelve countries, representing around 12 million small-scale farmers (both women and men).  

As a social development worker, Esther spent more than three decades working in the field of rural development alongside farmers, fishers and indigenous peoples as a community organizer, participatory action researcher, trainer, gender advocate, consultant, campaigns coordinator, NGO executive/manager and networker. Read the rest of this entry »

February 7th, 2015

Invitation to the Global Land Forum 2015

The Global Land Forum 2015 will be held on May 12-16, 2015 in Dakar, Senegal with the theme “LAND GOVERNANCE FOR INCLUSIVE DEVELOPMENT, JUSTICE AND SUSTAINABILITY: TIME FOR ACTION”.

Organized by the International Land Coalition (ILC), the forum is open to members and the public as well.

To register, visit http://www.globallandforum.org/

To respond to ILC’s extended call for membership, visit http://www.landcoalition.org/en/node/2424

Read the rest of this entry »

February 5th, 2015

AFA, GFAR conduct training workshop on grassroots foresight

DSC00312 2Feb 5, Quezon City, Philippines – In usual ways, the future of agriculture is shaped by the views of the international community, and organisations from advanced/emerging countries, many times with limited involvement of family farmers and their organizations. These futures usually address global issues. The processes of determining the futures, called foresight, oftentimes have limited application to local development.

However, there is a desire and a need for farmers and their organizations to also shape the future they want. How can foresight processes be more farmer-led, farmer-managed, and be more applicable to local developmental processes; and in so doing help empower farmers determine their future?

It is this question and need that prompted the Asian Farmers Association (AFA), with the support of the Global Forum on Agricultural Research (GFAR), to embark on a project that will implement local grassroots initiatives, to be piloted in three local areas, in three countries.

DSC00429 2AFA, with the support of GFAR, is currently conducting a “regional training workshop to implement grassroots foresight initiative”. The workshop is being held in Manila since Feb 2, and will run till Feb 6. Participants are 8 local trainers from India, Indonesia and the Philippines. Running on its fourth day today, the participants were able to already identify forces that can directly influence change as well as the resulting drivers of change through a simulation exercise.

The pilot areas for the grassroots foresight work and implementing partner organizations include: Central Himalayan region of India by INHERE (Institute of Himalayan Environmental Resources and Education), southern Palawan in Philippines by PAKISAMA, and in East Nusa Tenggara in Indonesia by API (Aliansi Petani Indonesia).

February 4th, 2015

Farmer uses social media to share information about pest

kulisapIreneo Cerilla, a farmer from Quezon, Philippines has found an innovative use of social media to help other farmers in his province and in the country.

He posted a photo of a “kulisap” (pest) called brontispa on his Facebook wall, with the following caption (translated from Filipino):

“This is the pest brontispa, which eats the coconut shoots while they are still white. Once the leaves fully develop, they are already brown and have no capacity for photosynthesis. The leaves then appear like mere sticks, and the coconut, known as the ‘tree of life,’ slowly dies.”

By sharing the photo and the information about the pest, he hopes other farmers will become more aware and take proactive measures to counter the pest.

Cerilla is also the president of PAKISAMA, a national federation of farmers in the Philippines, which is a member of AFA.

PAKISAMA trains its members on various sustainable agroecological pratices.

February 3rd, 2015

2015 International Year of the Soils calendar now available for download

mtcp2 calendar

Promoting the 2015 International Year of Soils, AFA, La Via Campesina, ANFPa and PIFON, with support from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Swiss Development Cooperation (SDC), have produced a calendar for the Asia Pacific Farmers’ Forum (also known as MTCP2), copies of which have been distributed to national implementing agencies (NIAs) of the program.

In line with the IYS theme of “Healthy Soils for a Healthy Life,” the calendar emphasizes that “The soil is a living system which sustains humanity. Family farmers keep the soils healthy and fertile through sustainable, agro ecological and organic approaches. Land is life, livelihood and culture. Respect, promote, protect and fulfill the family farmers’ rights to their lands and forests.”

It calls for support to family farmers in Asia and Pacific to help them unleash their potentials for poverty reduction, food sovereignty and nutrition security.

Click here to download a PDF copy of the calendar

February 3rd, 2015

AFA and LVC implement training program on M&E, KM, FM for MTCP2 implementors

MTCP2 regional implementing agencies Asian Farmers Association (AFA) and La Via Campesina (LVC) have designed and implemented a re-orientation and training program on monitoring and evaluation (M&E), knowledge management (KM) and financial management (FM) for the project’s National Implementing Agencies (NIAs).

The program was conducted in each of the three sub-regions (Southeast Asia, South Asia and Pacific) from December last year to January this year.

The workshop was intended to respond to a recommendation during the MTCP2 expanded regional steering committee meeting last October 2014 to harmonize and level off on MTCP2’s systems and tools in planning, monitoring, evaluation, finance and knowledge management.

At the end of the training, participants from all MTCP2 implementing agencies at national, sub-regional and regional levels were able to finalize their 2015 Qualitative Targets 2015-2018 as well as 2015 annual work plan and budget; and have clearer understanding of MTCP2 implementation and reporting formats.

They also experienced hands-on training on filling out M&E forms, as well as on online tools, knowledge sharing techniques, and photo and video documentation.

February 3rd, 2015

AFA calls for sustainable and inclusive partnerships to ensure global food security

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Small scale family farmers face big challenges. They have to increase yields to produce more for society. But in so doing, they must provide nutritious food, increase their incomes, adapt to the changing climate, protect their ecosystem and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Small scale family farmers have a response to these challenges: sustainable, agro-ecological and inclusive approaches to agriculture and agro-based enterprises with them through their organizations.

This, in summary, was the key message delivered by AFA Secretary General Esther Penunia during a panel session on “Ensuring Global Food Security” held last January 23 on the occasion of the 2015 Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland.

In her intervention, Ms. Penunia outlined some features of sustainable agriculture:

-production technologies that improve and enhance the soil’s health, use organic materials and nutrients, promote biodiversity, reduce wastage and promote nutrient recycling, promote diversification and integration, build on local knowledge and wisdom and allow farmers to continuously innovate;

-marketing and distribution systems that are economically rewarding: fair and good price for their products, adequate access to finance, markets and information, increasing participation in processing their products; and,

-farmers are strongly organized into associations and cooperatives along geographical and commodity lines and they are empowered to engage governments, businesses in policy and program formulation and implementation as well as in managing their own organizations and enterprises.

To be inclusive, she emphasized that women and men farmers, through their organizations, should have significant participation in decision making processes of the businesses, including setting prices, contracts, and valuation of their labor and production costs, as well as appropriate sharing of risks and benefits

Panelists to the session included Mr. Ertharin Cousins, Executive Director of the UN’s World Food Program (WFP); Shenggen Fen, Director General of International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI); David McLennan, President and CEO of Cargill USA; and Deputy President William Ruto of Kenya. The session was moderated by David Nabarro, Special Representative of the UN Secretary General for Food Security and Nutrition.

The panelists agreed that food security policies for the future should focus on partnerships with the private sector, governments and farmers cooperatives and associations, with the latter being recognized as equal partners.

Click here for the link to the Synopsis of the Panel Session by WEF
Click here for more photos from the WEF panel session

January 1st, 2015

Online Resource: Documentation Tools (Agricultures Network)

Documentation Tools

Agricultures Network

Click here

December 31st, 2014

ATTRACTING YOUTH TO AGRICULTURE IN ASIA

ATTRACTING YOUTH TO AGRICULTURE IN ASIA

A Scoping Paper Prepared by

Asian Farmers Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA)

December 2014

Attracting Youth in Agriculture in Asia_Final-paper

December 22nd, 2014

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November 27th, 2014

PROCEEDINGS: AFA Young Farmers’ Regional Forum and Workshop: Building the Development Agenda of Asian Young Farmers

AFA Young Farmers’ Regional Forum and Workshop: Building the Development Agenda of Asian Young Farmers

25-26 November 2014

Brentwood Suites, Quezon City

Click here to download

November 25th, 2014

Policy Brief on Young Farmers (PAKISAMA)

Policy Brief on Young Farmers (PAKISAMA)

Click here to download