Environment and Livelihood

Recent indications show that food production will have to be increased by 50–60% by 2050, when the world’s population is expected to reach 9 billion.

Sustainable livelihoods are among the most significant ways of addressing rural poverty, leading the poor to a productive life of dignity, self-worth and transformation. Food and livelihood security for smallholder farmers is threatened by environmental factors, limited market access and population growth.
Our strategy works to build a solid foundation for promoting climate change adaptation, biodiversity and ecosystem services.

We recognize that climate change will continue to mean more frequent and extreme weather events. We support in identifying ways to manage risks and mitigate the impacts of climate shocks. We employ appropriate community-centered approaches, featuring strong learning elements, can help promote out-scaling of models for bringing about the needed transformation on a scale that has larger and more lasting impact.

IIRR enables communities to become more productive while ensuring that their practices are sustainable, intensifies agricultural productivity, improves household nutritional practices, diversifies livelihood sources, and protects the environment on which their livelihoods depend.

Specific interventions in Asia and Africa include:

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Integrated family farms
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Bio Intensive Agriculture (BIG)
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Systems of Rice Intensification
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Organizing small holder producers into cooperatives, learning groups and producer associations
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Financial inclusion by linking them financial institutions
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Vegetable Oil Development
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Women Enterprise Development
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Agriculture Market Support
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Climate Smart Village Program
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Climate Smart Agriculture-Climate
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Smart Villages program

Bio-intensive Gardening to save the environment and improve nutrition

IIRR first introduced Bio Intensive Gardening (BIG) to the Sisters of Mary School, Inc., Girls’ town near the IIRR global headquarters at the Yen Center in Silang, Cavite, Philippines.

The BIG approach is a biological form of agriculture in which a small area of land is intensively cultivated, using nature’s own ingredients to rebuild and then maintain the soil’s productivity. At the heart of the approach is the effort to improve the soil’s capability to nurture and sustain plant life. In this approach, the soil is gradually enhanced and the composition of beneficial microbial life actually improves from season to season.

By growing food organically and integrating agroforestry practices in farming, students learn environmental protection and climate change adaptation measures. These environmentally-friendly measures also ensure the project’s success and sustainability.

To date IIRR has adopted the BIG approach and have incorporated this into Asia and Africa country programs to support communities to integrate BIG in various community interventions.