Madanapalle is located in the South of India, in the state of Andhra Pradesh. It is an important center for agricultural products and famous for tomatoes, mangos, groundnuts and silk. Many farmers in the area suffer from different causes: Climate change has a negative impact on the already arid climate with increasingly absent rainfalls. Moreover, big agrochemical companies become more and more influential, pushing famers into a vicious circle of debt by making them dependent on hybrid seeds and expensive pesticides. Many farmers have already committed suicide, leaving their familes without any perspective.
The increasing use of chemicals in agriculture as well as the lack of awareness regarding the importance of healthy ecosystems and biodiversity have led to serious environmental problems, such as soil degradation, pollution and contaminated drinking water - negatively affecting human health and livelihoods.
The project, that is carried out together with the local NGO 'Movement for Rural Emancipation' aims to demonstrate more sustainable methods to farmers that are well adapted to the climate and needs of the people. By using water more efficiently and implementing fruit bearing trees into the fields yields can be increased substantially.
Our tasks on site include:
- Carrying out research on soil quality, water availability and the socio-economical situation in order to analyze the framework for sustainability of the project.
- Setting up a demonstration farm using organic farming, agroforestry practices and sustainable water management.
- Organize a seminar for local famers on organic farming, agroforestry and sustainable water management.
- Set up an environmental education center on the farmsite for local farmers, students and volunteers to provide knowledge about the importance of environmental protection and the reasons of and solutions for various environmental problems.