Kaule e.V., an “Organisation for Socially Sustainable Agro-Projects” was founded in November 2007 to advocate agricultural projects in developing countries.
The members of our association are certain that in today’s world any change, wherever it might occur, has to be implemented from a holistic angle to be efficient.Therefore, a development project today has to be planned, carried through, and long-term accompanied in a holistic way. Possible influences and effects which result from our efforts as well as those from the outside world should be taken into account during the planning stage.
Our goal is the support of socially sustainable Agro-Projects in developing countries. Here, the association focuses on the social, economical and ecological aspects of such projects. Sustainability refers to the conservation of resources in order to guarantee the preservation of a system for the benefit of following generations. With this in mind we want to offer the participating farmers materials and knowledge, which they can pass on to neighbours and surrounding communities. Support for the association is carried out by means of financial promotion of on-site information, awareness training, and collecting donations in Germany.
The Agro-Projects are conducive to the preservation of habitats and the protection of the environment. Measures include growing local plant species to preserve the natural habitat, and/or the co-planting of species that symbiotically support and improve growth. As the number of plant species increases, so does the number of animal species (including birds, insects, and rodents), enriching the environment and considerable improving the income of local farmers. In addition, permanent and area-wide planting using these methods counteracts soil erosion as well as reducing water pollution from artificial fertilizer, further protecting the environment from increasing harm.
A higher diversity of economic plants brings about a larger variety of crops and thus a broader market offer. Furthermore, through the different harvest times of the individual plants the farmer has a longer harvest season. The combination of different plant species protects the plants better against bugs and harvest of one of the multiple agricultural crops at a time throught the year in contrast to harvesting monocultures results in a higher total yield. The farmer’s increased market offer creates more financial stability and allows him to maintain basic human needs, such as the education of his children. The later is currently refused to most landsmen, in a large extent due to the predominant subsistence economy.
By virtue of the low earnings many farmers are forced to take on additional occupations, which results in them having not sufficient freedom for furthering e.g. their education, which would be essential to fundamentally improve their situation. If their crop yields lie above home requirements they are able to sell their products in the market and thereby obtain an independent source of income, which allows them to better care for their social concerns. Traditional inheritance sharing of an estate leads to a diminishment of the agricultural areas of each family from generation to generation and thereby to a reduction of their respective crop yields. This adds to the destitution of the rural population and leads to an increasing number of people migrating to the cities, where the mostly destitute migrants settle in uncontrolled growing marginal colonies. Unfortunately, the desire for improved living conditions does not come true in most cases. On the contrary, they often intensify the social and economic problems of the country. Through alternative means of cultivation, and an assurance of the farmer’s maintenance, we want to counteract this trend. Furthermore, the continued cultivation of medical plants, as well as culturally and religiously meaningful plants, will be advocated, supporting the preservation of traditional rites and strengthening the people in their identity.
Eventually, alongside the farmers, research and development work will also profit from our project. Since the beginning of our commitment we have been working close together with native scientists and specialists. We attach importance to the scientific documentation of our work, which we want to publish later on in an academic journal. Thus, our experience is supposed to be also used internationally. In the long run, we understand our commitment as helping people to help themselves, so that in the future it is possible to regionally and independently practice sustainable agriculture.