Urgent Request for Permaculture Development Trainer(s) in Konso, Southern Ethiopia!
Strawberry Fields Eco-Lodge (SFEL) is a combined Permaculture and ecotourism project now establishing in the Konso Special Wareda, Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s Regional State, Ethiopia. The climate is a semi-arid (Kolla) with an elevation of 1000-2000m. The Konso people are renowned in Ethiopia for being very hard working. Our project has a close relationship with the local community. In the establishment stage we have been offering employment to local people, as well as networking with local stake-holders, NGOs, GOs and private initatives in the wareda. We hosted two 13-day PDCs given by Rosemary Morrow in May and June, for which we postponed the construction of the project for 2 months and financed 8 participants from Kambata Zone (sent by the NGO KTMM), as well as training local agricultural extension workers and community members. We are now fielding proposals to target donors to run a continual program of PDC training for local stakeholders, community members as well as regional and national participants from interested organizations. International participants will also partake on a self funded basis.
The project currently has no resident Permaculture teacher with a deep enough experience of Permaculture design and management to lead full 72-hour PDCs. SFEL has hired a local farm manager with considerable experience in conventional agriculture, named Mr Tariku Geda. He was trained by Rosemary in the first of the two PDCs she lead at SFEL (in May), but is not well enough experienced to lead PDCs at this stage. We are now searching for a lead teacher to run PDCs on our site on a monthly basis, assisted by Tariku with translation and technical input.
The position we have available is a 1 year contract, food and accommodation is provided along with a stipend of $250 equivalent per month. Konso is a truly remarkable land and the people have a lot of potential, despite being blighted with lack of education, poor infrastructure, a growing population and an unreliable climate. This year the belg rain (expected in March) failed, and now American wheat is being trucked in as food aid (despite the fact that there are huge amounts of grain available in the highlands within 100km of Konso!). We now need a seasoned permaculturalist, preferably with drylands experience to come and instill Permaculture methodologies here, working with trainees from local and national institutions which are active in agriculture and directly with the local community in Konso.
We are looking to get started by November this year. SFEL is also planning a program for training in income generating activities for local youth and women. We have the potential to significantly improve food security in Konso by training in Permaculture and diverting funds generated through ecotourism into follow-up initiatives for the local community. Rosemary did a fantastic job of starting this process on our behalf and now we need to keep that ball rolling.
Urgently requesting your assistance on this issue! Please find job description for available position here (28kb PDF). Please get in touch for more information on Konso and the SFEL project (contact details within PDF).