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Successful training at the AgriSocial Education and Training Centre in Gitega, Burundi

Similar to the other parts of the country, the project area of the AgriSocial Education and Training Centre in Gitega, Burundi, whos implementation ist supported by AgrarKontakte International (AKI) e.V, is affected by man-made erosion and soil degradation processes caused by poor agricultural management. Moreover, access to knowledge and information about permaculture is very limited resulting in a lack of qualified personnel to implement its principles. These challenges can be overcome through practice-oriented education and training. With the aim of training the project staff in the principles of permaculture to regenerate the degraded soil, the permaculture expert Mr. Ludovic Bourdon, was on site for four weeks.

The training included:

  • Introduction to erosion control and earthworks;
  • Management of water flow in the field;
  • Introduction to cultivation practices;
  • Introduction and practice in applying the Berkeley Compost (21-day method);
  • Introduction and application of effective microorganisms;
  • Introduction to bio-pesticides,crop conservation

Participants' impressions of the training:

"Through permaculture training I have learnt that our lives can improve significantly if we restore our natural resources without chemicals but by using effective microorganisms."– Mr. Maniragarura Pierre.

"Through the training on earthworks, I learned that water seeps into the soil and is stored, so that the soil can be conserved and productivity can be increased on a small plot." – Mr. Nkunzimana Athanase.

In addition to the measures to optimize the established processes, it is planned to further expand the project area. In this context, the topics of regenerative agriculture, value-added concepts, entrepreneurship and business management, as well as food processing and marketing will be considered. In addition, an 83-metre-deep well with a capacity of 5,000 liters per hour was drilled in the project area. The water shall be pumped up about 200 meters with the help of a solar pump. This will ensure that the women and children as well as the animals and plants in the project area will get clean drinking water. Moreover, food and feed can be even produced outside the rainy season. The aim of this project is to make the education and training center economically self-sustainable in the medium to long term. After completion of the project, the farmers should be able to implement regenerative agricultural approaches, develop an entrepreneurial mindset and establish business management processes in order to increase their production and generate more income.

The project AgrarSocial Education and Training Center is funded by the Ministry of Food, Rural Areas and Consumer Protection - Baden-Württemberg (MLR) since August 2020.

Training about compost making with Ludovic Bourdon
Training with Ludovic Bourdon about earth works and erosion protection
Project area in 3-D
Earth works and erosion protection
Trees at the nursery ready to be planted