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close this bookRecording and Using Indigenous Knowledge: A Manual (IIRR, 1996, 211 p.)
close this folderPart 4 Mini-case studies - How development can build on IK
View the documentMini-case studies
View the documentProblem identification and prioritization in Kiko Rosa, Philippines
View the documentCommunity manged health in Pinagsanjaan, Philippines
View the documentIncorporation of local free species in an agroforestry project in Layong Mabilog Philippines
View the documentLocal vegetable varieties for home gardening programs
View the documentTraditional animal dispersal schemes in Cavite, Philippines
View the documentIncreasing food Production in Negros, Philippines
View the documentOvercoming labor shortages through indigenous mutual-help groups
View the documentPromoting the use of IK in Venezuela
View the documentFarmers' experiments in teak germination in Sri Lanka
View the documentPromoting an indigenous savings scheme in Ethiopia

Increasing food Production in Negros, Philippines

Negros Occidental

In 1984, when global sugar prices plummeted, more than a quarter of a million people in Negros Occidental, Philippines, lost their jobs. Hunger and malnutrition spread. At the depth of the crisis the provincial government and the United Nations Children's Fund asked IIRR to help. IIRR and local organizations responded in 1986 with an intensive program to teach thousands of rural families to grow their own food through big-intensive gardening. In 1990 the project was expanded to include livestock production, sea farming, and pond fish production.

The project built on IK in three ways:

1 Its technology development end dissemination approach encouraged participation and indigenous experimentation. Farmers adapted IIRR's big-intensive gardening models to fit available labor, resources, and the environment. For example:

- They modified the double-digging bed preparation method 50 that it became lees labor intensive.

- They used old bottles, bamboo, and other locally available materials as enclosures for plant beds, instead of banana or coconut trunks as suggested by the project.

- One farmer developed a method which eased the task of crushing shells for fertilizer.

2 The project promoted indigenous vegetables and fruits through collection and distribution of seeds of indigenous species.

3 Project staff valued the indigenous practices. At first, staff advised cooperators to grow mussels using the bamboo "wigwam" method common in southern Luzon. After a typhoon washed away many of the wigwams. cooperators noticed that a neighbor's mussel poles were not heavily damaged. They found that the traditional method he used was better suited to the area's sandy sea bottom. Following the 'read of their experienced neighbor, cooperators split their bamboo poles in half, making them less buoyant and less apt to wash away in storms. And by splitting the poles, cooperators were able to increase the size of their plots using the same amount of materials.

Compiled by Laurito B. Arizala, Rustico A. Bi and Evelyn Mathias