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A life dream realized

Masein village is in Bogale Township, Ayeyarwaddy Division of the Delta region, an area vulnerable to flooding due to rising sea level and increased cyclones and storm surges. In the aftermath of cyclone Nargis in 2008, the agricultural lands, crops, and livestock animals were destroyed. The flooding also claimed people’s lives. The village was adversely affected and struggled with rehabilitation works. Since then, they often experience flooding and heavy and irregular rainfall resulting in a more impoverished rural community.

Agriculture, (crops, livestock, and poultry) is their main source of livelihood. Rice production, coconut and betel nut cultivation, and trading greatly contribute to the income of the communities in Masein village. The livestock sector also provides a higher income. Many households are engaged in raising pig, native chicken, and duck.

In 2018, IIRR and the Radanarayar Association (RDA) have implemented a Climate- Smart Agriculture project to address food insecurity in the village. Farmers in the area participated in school and home gardening, and livestock rearing.

Daw Myint Sein is one of the project beneficiaries. She and her family work in a small area of lands for subsistence paddy cultivation but the production doesn’t yield sufficient income. All the family members have to work as casual laborers for additional income. Daw dreams to raise livestock to increase the income of her family. Accordingly, she engaged in animal husbandry training and received support from the project when distributed 50 ducks to each participant of duck rearing. She also contributed 10 more ducks of her own. Through this, Daw expects to increase their family’s income.

In the beginning, she was challenged with the feeding cost, particularly when the egg-laying rate was low and not uniform. Although she uses the rice from her land production, she still has to purchase some commercial feeds.

Three months later, the production rate became more profitable. She now manages her own business and determined that she could do better. She plans to add more ducks and when she could save some money, she plans to build a betel leaf garden. Daw hopes to receive more training on animal husbandry and to learn more about feeds management, vaccination, and medication.