Project concept for the Liana rainwater harvesting projects

Awareness raising village meetings are held in the selected pilot villages. Presentations are given on 

1. water harvesting and rainwater harvesting techniques and its benefits and suitability; emphasis is put on the rooftop harvesting

2. drip irrigation techniques and its benefits

3. benefits and requirements of self-help groups for collective saving

4. benefits and models or firewood-saving stoves (Mwanga only)

5. examples are given from other project sites. In addition, villagers select representatives to take part in a study tour offered by the project. 

Study tours are organised for the selected villagers to existing project sites that work as examples where the suggested techniques are already  in use. Participants also meet with a well-functioning self-help group. Study tour participants prepare presentations to explain to the rest of the villagers what they saw on the tour. 

Second set of village meetings are organised. An interactive session is held at the beginning of the meeting to discuss what was explained in the first set of meetings. This is how those who did not take part in the first meetings get a summary of the subject. Study tour participants give presentations on what they learned on the tour. If the villagers are interested in starting the suggested activities, a committee is selected. Also a building site for the demonstration tank is selected collectively. The committee organises practical matters related to the building of the demo tank and also handles the selection of students who would like to learn tank building. This committee also works as a link between the facilitators (project staff) and the village. If a bunch of people would like to for a group that starts working with the project, they contact the committee in order to arrange an advisor to meet them on constitution and work plan compilation.  Afterwards the project works only with groups.

Demonstration tanks of 10m3 are built in each village. Building of this first tanks starts the hands-on training that is offered to the tank builder students. Tanks are ferro-cement and cost about 625 euros (about 1,000,000 Tsh). Gutters are built as well and new gutter builders are trained. 

Forming groups get advice from the project on the compilation of constitutions and work plan and registration. 

Farmer groups build tanks on the cost-sharing basis. Groups save 40% of the tank price (250,000 Tsh), and collect poles, gravel and sand. We will work with the groups till every member of the group has obtained a tank, given that the groups keep their savings schedule. 

After the first rains, when the tanks have collected some water training is offered in the establishment of drip irrigated kitchen gardens of 7.5m x 1.5m.  First, seedbeds are established, later seedlings are transferred to he garden. Immediately after this, groups are offered training in pest management. We use 20 liter bucket drip irrigation kits. Group members obtain drip kits on a cost-sharing (50/50) basis. Locally made kits cost about 40,000Tsh. 

We offer training in nursery establishment for seedling to make live fences (hedges) to protect the vegetable garden. Training is also offered in improved varieties of fruit trees and growing fodder. In Mwanga, the requirement for a farmer group of obtaining project top-up funding for the tanks is to establish a small woodlot.  Some 15-20 trees are planted after the first long rains (April-May), later planting is repeated two times in order to get about 60 trees on each farm that has a water tank. 

In Mwanga, training is offered in building firewood-saving stoves.  Farmers are required to start using firewood-saving stoves in order to obtain project top-up funding for the tanks. Group members obtain stoves on a cost-sharing (50/50) basis. 

Training is offered in marketingTraining is also offered in independent fund-raising, project planning and proposal writing. Groups that are registered are eligible to apply funding from the village development funds (government funds). 

We believe that this training package offered to the groups will prepare the groups to operate independently for the continuous improvement of their livelihoods even after the project ends.