Rural women are modernizing farming

Fabiola making a presentation in an HCT workshop

León, Nicaragua

Fabiola Chavarria recently participated in and graduated from the HCT program in 2021.  She is from the community of Troilo, one of two communities ViviendasLeón works in, in Nicaragua. She is currently producing vegetables, work that previously had been accessible only to men.

The inequality gaps and the difficult situation in which Fabiola Chavarria lived, a 28-year-old peasant woman motivated her and other women like her, to organize and participate in the training cycle of the HCT Human Capacity Training program, which ViviendasLeón provides in the communities of Sutiava. The program provides tools to improve their living conditions and better manage their lives, through the work they carry out in their humble communities.

Last year ten new families completed HCT, and today they join many other women who are protagonists of the Family Farming Program. They were taught technical skills in the workshop recently organized by our agricultural technician Camilo Melendez, called: “Importance of Small Family Farms, building sustainable livelihoods”, whose objective was to provide knowledge and training in the use and good management of vegetable gardens, pest management, germination and farming innovation for a better quality and quantity of vegetables and fruits produced.

This activity was carried out in Camilo’s agro-ecological farm, located outside of León. This workshop is one of many planned activities for women like Fabiola who are studying to improve their technical knowledge of farming, and affirming the right of rural women to receive technical training and support to become farmers, improve their production of vegetables, the use of the land and small-scale diversified production systems, and improve the quality of crops while encouraging the marketing of the harvest produced.

During the course, a tour of the agro-ecological farm was carried out where the women were able to see examples of other low-cost project initiatives, including a Tilapia fish pond hatchery, a black Iguana hatchery, and a Dragon fruit plantation, and new production techniques for cucumber, chiltoma and tomato.

During the training these new farmers shared their experiences, anecdotes and reflections of the work they have been doing in their farms. They mentioned use of methods and techniques for pest control, preparation of seedlings, and types of crops they harvest.

Fabiola Chavarria commented: 

“When I started to participate in the HCT training process, I was a very shy woman with self-esteem problems.” Today Fabiola Chavarria is experiencing some positive changes and has overcome many obstacles. As she says, “for example, in our country Nicaragua, women have had few opportunities to work in the fields.”

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