The BOLGRIM project under Tribal Development Fund (TDF) is in implementation since April 2013 in 19 villages of Rongjuli block, Goalpara district of Assam. It is supported by MABARD, Assam. The selected economically backward 400 families have completed planting of 80000 rubber plants that are growing well. The survival rate of the plantation is 91.13%.
In order to uplift the economic condition of the beneficiaries, Self Help Groups, Joint Liability Groups, and Farmers’ Clubs were introduced, thereby, 52 SHGs with 567 members, 50 JLGs with 242 members, while 11 Farmers’ Club with 220 members are actively functioning. All the 400 farmers are organised into two Farmer Producer Organisations for marketing and sustainability. Present, one FPO is producing and marketing banana while another FPO is producing and marketing brooms. These FPOs are promoted by NABARD under FPO promotion fund for their handholding support.
TDF- Bagan Project
The BAGAN project under Tribal Development Fund (TDF) is in implementation since April 2018 in 22 villages of Sidli block, Chirang district of Assam. 375 acres were covered for individual orchard or wadi development. There are two type of wadi beneficiary i.e., wadi beneficiary with 1 acre landholding and another with 0.5 acre landholding. The main crops for the orchard are orange, apple ber and areca nut. 164 marginalised land holding farmers had completed their multiple crop plantation namely orange (15000 orange plants), apple ber (3000 apple ber plant), areca nut (24000 areca nut plant) intercrop with pineapple, black gram and pea to develop small orchard. The border plant are teak and gamari. For immediate boundary protection, bamboo fencing is used and in subsequent period live fencing with jatropha or any other locally available hedge plants will be used.
Management practices like weeding, mulching, base formation, drip irrigation with pitchers, plant protection measures, Urea, SSP, MOP fertilizer application are going on. The survival rate of the main crops is 80%.
A Model Rubber Plantation
Bosco Reach Out has been implementing the rubber plantation project in Agricultural Training Centre, Joropara, North Garo Hill District of Meghalaya under Salesians of Don Bosco, Guwahati province funded by Porticus Germany since November 2014 to enable the centre to be self-sufficient of resources and to continue to journey with the people of the region through academic education, pastoral work, leadership training, human rights interventions. 15000 plants in 30 hectares has been completed its plantation successfully and 89% rubber plants are maintained and survived.
Tapping tools and equipment for rubber processing for rubber are purchased in collaboration with Rubber Board of India. Land development and Construction of rubber processing unit (workshed) has been done as per the provision of the project activities. It is a pilot project to savour its impact and results in a couple of years and accordingly to plan for all of the Salesian presences and make each of the programs / institutions self-sustaining. The growth of the plants depends on the necessary and proper management and care; all the necessary steps have been taken for the good harvest.
Agriculture Development Programme for Tribal People
The project entitled Agriculture Development Programme for Tribal people of North Garo Hills district of Meghalaya, North East India has been implemented since August 2018 with the support of MANOS UNIDAS, Spain. The project covers approximately 350 families from seven villages under Bajengdopa block, North Garo Hills district of Meghalaya. Its goal is to improve the Socio-economic status of rural farmers by improving the production and productivity through systematic broad based Agricultural Development Programmes in North East India.
175 farmers received various training like training on land base farm management (Agri-Horti-Livestock) to improve their knowledge and skills on agriculture, horticulture and livestock management. Out of 175 farmers, 129 farmers cultivated 5160 Karimunda variety of black peppers, 12 farmers cultivated 3000 Kew variety of pineapple plants and 34 farmers cultivated 680 seedlings of Assam lemons as per the concept and guidance of the Agriculture expert. 350 Gangguru breed of female piglets were supplied to 175 beneficiaries (two each) with the consultation of veterinary expert.
Beekeeping under Honey Mission of KVIC
BRO established linkage and networking with Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC), Guwahati for convergence to promote beekeeping as an alternative method to increase the income of the Wadi farmers as under NABARD TDF Project. The Wadi farmers as under NABARD TDF Project at Goalpara district has completed six years of its rubber plantation. The objective was to involve farmers and provide training of beekeepers in promotion of beekeeping, in areas such as managing the beehives, production and sale of honey and other hive by-products by drawing up guidelines for the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of bee diseases. 102 farmers participate the awareness programme.
A five days training programme on beekeeping for beginners was conducted with an objective to impart education about modern beekeeping, build human resource in the beekeeping sector, diversification of apiculture to increase income of the farmers, and develop entrepreneurial skills in beekeeping. 25 rubber growers under NABARD TDF wadi project received the training and all the trainees received 10 bee boxes each along with tool kits and bees.