Rural farmers in Nepal join local permaculture network

Rural farmers in Nepal join local permaculture network

Farmers working plots as small as a third of an acre have agreed to implement permaculture techniques as part of a matched grant program around Begnas Lake in Nepal.

Hillside farms overlook Begnas Lake

With the Nepal Permaculture Group they are creating a local hub for a network of farmers who are cooperating to discover and demonstrate the advantages of organic farming.

In the 2018-19 grant round Permafund helped kick off a farm improvement project with a workshop for farmers in the Kashki district.

The main objectives of the workshop were to:

  • introduce people involved in permaculture and similar philosophies to the network and provide a forum for sharing their expertise and experience.
  • identify the skills in the networks of organic food marketing in Nepal
  • find ways to establish an organic produce & market network in Pokhara
  • build a local Resource Centre to promote permaculture and related philosophies
  • work as a pressure group to advocate and lobby for a more sustainable society.

The farmers produce fruit, vegetables, medicinal herbs and livestock

Beekeeping adds to the mix of produce

The farmers agreed to

  • continue to improve their farms for at least seven years while also receiving technical and other support from the state government,
  • coordinate and collaborate with other farmers in their areas,
  • keep records on costs and benefits to help analyse the difference between a conventional & a model farm
  • base their work on organic and permaculture principles
  • to report on their farm’s progress on a quarterly basis
  • to establish their farms as model farms in their area with at least two farms to be utilised as local resource centres.

The support from Permafund has helped the Nepal Permaculture Group coordinate the resource centre and model farm initiative which is encouraging and empowering farmers and inspiring their communities.

Livestock plays a key role

All contributions to Permafund, whether single or recurring donations, are very much appreciated. For more information please contact the Permafund team permafund@permacultureaustralia.org.au

Donations Appeal for Permafund’s 2020 grant round

Donations Appeal for Permafund’s 2020 grant round

Dear Donors, Key Supporters and the Permaculture Community. 

Permaculture Australia’s Permafund is very grateful for your thoughtful, kind and generous donations over the past days, weeks, months and years. 

We are pleased to announce that the focus of Permafund’s 2020 grant round will be on the recovery from extreme weather events, including bushfires, plus designing for disaster in preparedness for the future. The recent crises here in Australia and internationally demand a response and a donation to Permafund is a meaningful way to contribute.

Permafund Chair, John Champagne of Bega Valley explains, “Permafund has been active over the past eight years assisting small NGO’s around the world with their permaculture initiatives. It’s important now to focus on the crisis we’ve experienced from extreme weather events and assist local permaculture groups effectively assist their communities in this time of need.”

Echidna hunting for water during the bushfires

The total of the donations made to Permafund at present is just short of the amount that triggers a micro grant round.

The Permafund team is calling for donations to help boost this total as high as possible before the 2020 grant round is opened for applications.

By making a one-off donation or setting up a regular donation on this website you will be supporting communities with funds to assist them to recover, restore and prepare for the future.

Essential water tanks destroyed by fire

We thank you in advance for your kind donations to support this important appeal.

Permaculture Australia’s Permafund team welcomes suggestions for partnering in fund-raising initiatives.

Donations to Permafund (Permaculture International Public Fund) of $2.00 or more are tax deductible in Australia. Many thanks.

For further information please contact permafund@permacultureaustralia.org.au

Bushfire debris on NSW South Coast beaches

Fair Share Friday: Building community resilience with permaculture

Fair Share Friday: Building community resilience with permaculture

Thanks to your generous donations, PA’s Permafund has supported 59 projects in 17 countries. Each month we’ll bring you a wrap up of some of the projects being supported, so you can follow their progress and fantastic outcomes.

They say a picture tells a thousand words, so scroll through and check out the photo updates shared from Sustainable Communities Kenya. The team have been busy training farmers in organic farming skills, with more activities still occurring before the crop harvest occurs in July and August, and “are happy how our farmers have benefits so much because of the Permafund grant.”

The IRDS Project team in India have completed the training for fifty rural tribal farmers in growing tomatoes, brinjal, beans and castor oil and provision of seeds. This included a focus on eco friendly farm inputs, low cost crop tonics, and intercropping. Criteria used to determine the farmers included: young, has interest to try new methods in agriculture especially the integrated agriculture, allocate time to training and other project related activities, and has land to practice the new permaculture skills.

“IRDS expresses its sincere thanks to PA’s Permafund for their partnership. The farmers are taking care of their cultivation crops now, and they are happy to raise various crops in their lands that will ensure diverse crops and various out come as a result for their sustainable livelihoods.”

The reality and impact of COVID in India, was shared in the project update from Aranya India, with many team members, family and the project communities negatively impacted by COVID directly.

“The situation here isn’t as great. Many of our family, friends , staff and the farming community have been affected with COVID. We have started working on the one acre permaculture projects, however couldn’t continue with the sudden resurge in COVID cases. The villagers shut their boundaries and are not stepping out of their homes whatsoever.  However, we have managed to work a little bit with the help of our ground level staff and volunteers. As the monsoon is nearing, we have procured the plants for plantations and earthworks have started.”

And finally, we are thrilled to introduce a new project in Zambia. The Youth Empowerment for Development Initiative (YEDI) plans to train rural communities to improve land, become more resilience and sustainably produce food using permaculture principles.

The scope of the project is ambitious, aiming to not only teach permaculture but also to train local leaders to nudge farmers towards ‘climate smart agriculture’ where traditional beliefs at times hinder the adoption of sustainable practices. (For examples of such beliefs see Considering Religion and Tradition in Climate Smart Agriculture: Insights from Namibia).


Permafund will follow YEDI’s progress with interest, as its goals of land conservation and permaculture ideas may provide lessons for many projects in such hot, subtropical areas with limited rainfall.

For more information:

PA’s Permafund provides small grants for permaculture projects implemented by community organisations across the globe. Since 2012, we have supported 59 projects in 17 countries, thanks to generous donations. Permaculture Australia is a registered charity and registered environmental organisation, and donations over $2 are tax deductible in Australia. To find out more, including how to donate here.

Fifty five projects supported by PA’s Permafund

Fifty five projects supported by PA’s Permafund

Fifty five! Thanks to a generous donation from Permaculture Sydney North we are thrilled to fund another permaculture project – bringing the grand total of projects supported by PA’s Permafund to fifty five in sixteen countries.

A Permafund grant will support PRM, a grassroots organisation, to assist women farmers in 10 rural villages in India to revitalize their farming with permaculture and organic practices. This will include training, tree planting, promotion of local Indigenous seeds, & improved water harvesting activities.

PRM promotes biodiversity forests using the Miyawaki Forest promotion methods – when diversified tree saplings are planted with limited spacing, they grow straight, fast and tall. The local community was involved when PRM initiated this innovative method at a village named Pappudayanpatti, contributing their time, energy and material resources.

“A cultural change is required in the food habits of the communities, with a renewed focus on traditional foods which were the only source of diet in earlier days when our ancestors lived happily and healthy. Similarly, farmers want to restore and promote Indigenous seeds that are drought tolerant, medicinal and healthy. “

This is what PA’s Permafund is all about – enacting the the three ethics of permaculture (Earth Care, People Care & Fair Share) and supporting grassroots projects around the globe to build stronger communities.

How can I get involved?

Want to make a difference too? Donate to PA’s Permafund today here and help build food security and stronger communities across the globe. Donations over $2 are tax deductible.

Kiini Sustainable Initiative Kenya inspiring attitude change & transformative thinking through permaculture

The Permafund team has received a positive mid-term progress report from the Kiini Sustainable Initiative based in Nyeri, Kenya. Following their receipt of an AU$2,000 micro grant in 2018, they’ve reported that the overall project is progressing well in terms of accomplishing their objectives and adhering to their February to November 2019 timeline.

In a community where farmland and the environment have been degraded and natural resources like rainwater are being under-utilised, the project has aimed to encourage the wise use of resources to improve community food security and overall productivity.

Students from the Nyeri Farm View Academy learning about compost making

Deforestation, over-cultivation of farmland, loss of topsoil through water and wind erosion, indiscriminate use of insecticides and inorganic fertilisers, loss of biodiversity and pollinators have inspired the Kiini Sustainable Initiative to introduce permaculture education and activities as tools for change.

Through education about permaculture principles the Initiative’s goal is to inspire attitude change and transformative thinking in the community to better use their natural and human resources to: –

  • harvest water and improve water quality
  • improve land management practices
  • reduce erosion
  • increasing biodiversity and
  • restore the environment

On site permaculture solutions have included the installation of water tanks on homes to harvest roof run-off for domestic use and irrigation of food crops, construction of a simple water recycling system including grey water collection and terracing to slow erosion allow improvement of the soil.

A simple grey water recycling system

At the Nyeri Farm View Academy children are learning about permaculture through the creation of a kitchen garden assisted by teachers, parents and the community. Other schools in the area are interested in the project which could expand if more funding support becomes available.

Junior students visiting new gardens

The Kiini Sustainable Initiative is optimistic the project will achieve its objectives despite the challenges of drought conditions, the proliferation of pests due to the high temperatures and the slow adoption of permaculture principles among some community members.

Donations, tithes and pledges to Permafund are assisting projects like this overseas and in Australia. Donations of $2.00 and over are tax deductible and a recurring donation facility is available on the Permaculture Australia website.

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