In 2015 India was placed at top in the United Nations World Hunger List, being home to more than 194 million people living with hunger. Failed crop cycles due to drought, diseases and poor seed quality not only lead to hunger but also influence farmers’ economic situation (as they can no longer sell products) and the well-being of their animals. To combat hunger in the Thar and support villagers of whom approximately 82% claim agriculture as their livelihood we operate with different methods concentrating on several aspects that improve agricultural produce. Apart from providing families with Arid Horticulture Units (a supply of vital nutrients for a family) which we talked about in our last post there are three more methods we work with to aid villagers.
Our work with seed banks is split. First of all we analyse different seeds in order to find the most profitable ones in terms of water consumption and agricultural produce. As soon as the most efficient ones are spotted we store these seeds in a mix of neem leaf and ash until we hand them over to villagers. The above described process has significant benefits. Villagers don’t have to go to the market in order to get seeds, which can save them an enormous amount of time and money. Additionally the seeds have been tested in soil that is similar to theirs hence the chances that the yield will be successful increase. As of 2016 we have set up 453 seed banks.