03 May 2016

There was a time when our region was green, crop production and pastures were well supplied by the sufficient amount of water. The river Syrdarya was full of water and more than 2500 community were settled on that time. Everyone was happy and had enough food for the household.

For the last 25 years, the water in the delta region of Syrdaya river has completely dried out, the water channels were filled up by clays and no water now in our regions, the majority of the community are left out the region and few households remained and continued to live in such unbearable socio ecological conditions.

Unfortunately my family was one of those few families, who had to stay because we had no place to go. It was hard to my dad to take care of our family, he used to bring pure water from 30 km far using a horse and rarely by car if his friends were able to support.

We had about 9 ha of productive irrigated land which my dad had to squeeze down his farming land into 0,8 ha because of shortage of irrigation water. It has to be mentioned that the quality of water was too bad and salty.

Because of Syrdarya river and Aral sea drying and climate in the region became arid and dry, sandy air, salty water made the life even complicated though the people had to live and make their lives as best as they could. The health situation in the region was also not that good because of salty water and sandy air. Since my childhood I had to support my dud on this tiny farming land and we had to grow only potato and some vegetables. The productivity was too low because of salty water. Yet, I had to extra work on the regional city as labour man in order to support my dud and my family. This was a typical living pattern of our family for the last 25 years, until the NGO “Tabiat Alemi” came to our village with the support from  UNDP Kazakhstan and the Coca Cola Company's New World initiative to improve the water delivery and rehabilitation of the abandoned water channels. The project has rehabilitated a water channel which has now provides a water to our village. The project has supported to install a water filters so that we can access to the pure water. What is the most important, we have now sufficient irrigation water to revitalize my dud’s farming in its full capacity of 9ha. We’re now cultivating many crops such as tomato, potato, wheat, maize, cucumber and many other seasonal crops. We’re trying to best more than two harvests in a year which experience has also been obtained from the project’s experts during the trainings. We got more than 9 thousand incomes for the first year and plan to double it on the next year when we will have our own seeds and improve our cropping agro technologies. This year was very productive, the project experts have introduced us how to efficiently build houses. Thanks to improved family income from the farming, I have built my own house now, I do not go to the regional city anymore to do a labour work. We have a stable income from our farm. The business people are coming to our village to buy our crops but we bring and sell our product in the local and regional markets by our own effort so that to make a good income. My younger brother is also helping me and my dad and collects his share and next year he is going to get marry. He very optimistic and has opened his own agricultural product shop in our village. He sells not just our farming products but also quality agricultural input supplies in our village. The local farmers are very happy that they can locally get access to the quality agricultural products.

A year before the project we had about 35 households living in our village, now we have around 79 households. The people getting back to their heritage root region, because of improved socio economic conditions. Thanks to improved water supply, we have a stable forestry agency with its productive nursery system and almost 90 percent of the people from our region are working in this forestry agency and making their lives by the income from the nursery breeding system. The improved water delivery system has also positively contributed to the livestock breeding system in our region due to pasture land stock water management system. Mt. Smagulov says “I never though just because of improved delivery of water, our region may reverted  back to green and boosted  living livelihood and production system in the region; it is especially, a very special moments when no one had even a tiny hopes that we may return to these productive periods”.

This project through its activities encourages innovative, inclusive and sustainable solutions to key development challenges.  Women and youth empowerment, Environmental sustainability, particularly for water, are the main components of New World initiatives which we do know and follow up.




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