Farmers of Hom and Simmano villages in Hadxaifong district of Vientiane will reduce the use of chemicals in farming processes after joining a training programme that increased awareness about chemicals and the need for sustainable development. The training, with the theme of “Education for Sustainable Development” (ESD), was imparted to representatives of the villages and teachers so that they could pass on information to local villagers for green development. “The Lao economy has grown quite fast in recent years but we are currently facing many issues, especially the big gap in development between the central and rural area of Laos and environmental problems,” said a representative of the Non-Formal Education Development Centre (NFEDC). “To reduce this gap, only ESD can solve the problems. However, local people still do not know and understand ESD. So this training will allow participants to know about this and they can transmit this useful information to others in their hometowns,” he added. The orientation and training workshop on a community-based ESD pilot project is being organised from March 19-22 at the NFEDC in Hadxaifong district of Vientiane with support from UNESCO Bangkok. It is being attended by the heads of Hom and Simmano villages in Hadxaifong district of Vientiane and related officials. The ESD will be implemented in Hom and Simmano villages because the residents are mostly farmers. Another reason is that there are small centres of NFDEC located at the target sites that teach sewing, cooking and agriculture to local and nearby residents. Meanwhile, many chemicals such as pesticides and insecticides are used for growing crops without quality protection methods. These chemicals affect the health of farmers and consumers and harm the environment. At the training, all participates tried three modules including reflection, sharing and acting so that they can share their knowledge and experience with local villagers. “We will teach farmers how to grow their crops without destroying the environment and harming the people’s health. We may expand our project to other sites if we are successful in these first two demonstration areas,” said a lecturer at the training, Mr Souphap Khounvixay.
Vientiane Times pg. 2 Friday March 22, 2019.