M&AOSB Kicks Off its Livelihood Training Series
Yin Mon Aye
In July, M&AOSB kicked off the first of its livelihood training series aimed at driving inclusive economic growth in areas where we operate. The five-day Homestead Gardening training took place in Nanttharpu Village Tract from July 7, 2018 to July 11, 2018 and included classroom learning as well as hands-on activities. A total of 29 trainees from Nanttharpu Village Tract, Nga Yoke Kaung, and Kyawy Chaing Village Tract participated in the training. Topics covered include soil, seeds & germination tests, soil preparation, composting, making effective microbes, and mushroom cultivation. Trainees actively participated in every activity and on the last day, each trainee prepared a dream map and an action plan on what they envisioned growing at home. Many of the trainees have already started their own homestead gardens and a monitoring plan is in place to ensure that trainees receive additional support at appropriate intervals.
As the second part of its training series, M&AOSB partnered with the Myanmar Coconut Producers and Traders Association (MCPTA) to offer a coconut handicraft training program aimed at enhancing income-generating knowledge and skills of community stakeholders in Nanttharpu Village Tract, Kyway Chaing Village Tract, and Nga Yoke Kaung Town. A total of 23 participants from Kyway Chaing Village Tract, 13 participants from Nanttharpu Village Tract, and 3 participants from Nga Yoke Kaung Town attended the trainings which were offered in 2 back-to-back sessions in July and August. The 12-day training covers lessons in basic drawing, painting, cutting, smoothening, adhering parts with different types of glue for durability, drilling, measuring, and designing, using tools and machinery, knowledge of electric currents, polishing, packaging, and pricing.
Seeking market opportunity is a challenging task due to a lack of business skills among the trainees, who have relatively low education standards and poor marketing ability. In consideration of this, M&AOSB partially contributed the trainees’ memberships at MCPTA so that the trainees can stay connected to other producers and gain market access. In order to achieve sustainability, a committee is organized for supervision and management of the training materials in Kyway Chaing and Nanttharpu. At the end of the training, each trainee was also asked to develop their own action plans on what products they are going to produce, the timeframe and their market plan. A group of trainees have already started a work shop soon after the training and is receiving orders from the resorts and restaurants across the area.
The CSR Program aims to uplift the socioeconomic status of community stakeholders and drive inclusive economic growth of the region by providing a source of income for its community so they do not have to depend on fishing alone as the source of living and also to empower women in the region who have had no major source of income before.