Stories of Change

Members of the Fetomone group among their corn. Photo: CWS

In May 2017, CWS was able to expand its home gardening and chicken raising support to an additional two villages in West Timor.

Seeds, chickens and credit: a recipe for success in West Timor

Daniel Liunokas leads the Fetomone group of farmers in Enonabuasa village in West Timor, Indonesia. [You may remember Enonabuasa from this story about covered wells.] For the last year, the 14-member Fetomone group has been a way for farmers to work together to achieve prosperity. The group formed itself last year as part of CWS’ Timor Zero Hunger program in West Timor, through which CWS supports subsistence farm families to have more – and more nutritious – food and better lives in general.

“With support from CWS, we grow more and different vegetables than in the past, and we eat most of the harvest ourselves; but we also sell some in the market for cash,” Daniel explains.

He continued, “We are also growing corn seedlings for next season, and we are raising chickens, too. Thanks to CWS, we are sharing an incubator to help hasten hatching, and now we have 133 chickens, which we hope will improve our children’s health because we now have eggs and chicken meat for them.”

The group has also expanded its activities into finance and credit. Daniel explains, “Recently we started a savings group, to which we each contribute Rupiah 5,000 (0.37 USD) each month; so far, we’ve saved Rupiah 500,000 ($37) which we plan to use for more seeds and tools.” For this innovation within the Timor Zero Hunger program, CWS staff and the local government agricultural extension worker have supported the Fetomone members with technical advice and support for group management. They can now be officially recognized by the District Agriculture and Food Security Agency, which will allow them to access government help with specialized training as well as seeds and fertilizer.

In Daniel’s words, “We are very proud and happy to be the first farmers group in Enonabuasa to be recognized by the government!”