Assessment on home gardening program as a response to COVID-19 in SLM project’s pilot townships, January 2021 – Myanmar

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About the assessment

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) is working closely with Department of Planning of Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation (MoALI) in order to implement the Section 2.1.7 of the COVID-19 Economic Relief Plan (CERP) by supporting farmers, small agricultural processors, seed farmers and agriculture businesses.

In order to support the CERP implementation plan, the project, in collaboration with respective Department of Agriculture (DoA) office in pilot Townships, distributed five types of vegetable seeds in Delta (i.e. watercress, eggplant, long bean, okra, roselle) and five type of vegetables in CDZ (i.e. eggplant, long bean, okra, roselle, cucumber), watering can and pamphlets on home gardening to rural farmers in five pilot townships starting from June 2020. The goals of the home gardening programme were to improve food access, nutrition and food security of rural farmers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Highlights

❖ 240 farmers harvested a total of 10 389 Kilograms of vegetables and generated 4 641 600 Kyats as income over June – December 2020 period.
❖ Water accessibility, diseases/insects/pests and effects of climate change including flood and drought were described as main challenges.
❖ Household consumption of fresh vegetables and income generation by selling of surplus vegetables were two major benefits of this initiative.
❖ Overall, 85 percent of household consumed at least 6 out of 12 food groups in all townships. Among them, 99 percent of household consumed vegetables in the last 24-hour.
❖ Overall, 52 percent of women (15-49 year) achieved minimum dietary diversity by consuming at least 5 out of 10 food groups in all townships.

Summary

The report provides an analysis and evaluation of the home gardening program implemented by the “Sustainable cropland and forest management in priority agro-ecosystems of Myanmar” (the SLM) project. Home gardening supports were provided to 1 899 farming households before the Monsoon season. The data collection was done from 1 to 18 December 2020 when majority of farmers have had harvested their vegetables.

The findings of the assessment include the total quantity of fresh vegetables harvested and consumed by household, quantity sold and income earned, issues and challenges of home gardening program, typical dietary diversity status of both household and women of reproductive age from rural agriculture-based communities.

Objectives of the survey

This assessment has two main objectives. They are:

1) To identify quantity of consumption of fresh vegetables, quantity sold, income earned and issues and challenges of home gardening program.
2) To assess “Household Dietary Diversity Score” (HDDS) and “Minimum Dietary Diversity of Women of Reproductive Age Women” (MDD-W) of rural agriculture household receiving home gardening package.

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