Activities

 
     
  The Community Development Centre (CDC) is engaged in following activities.  
     
 
Conservation of traditional roots and tubers
Conservation of traditional crop varieties
Promotion of organic agriculture
Social mobilisation and empowerment
Training Programmes
Awareness programmes
   
 
   
   Conservation of traditional roots and tubers  
     
  At present, traditional roots and tuber conservation through cultivation is the main activity of the CDC. This was initiated in late 1990s, when the knowledge of the elderly farmers who cultivated traditional seeds and roots was identified. Their knowledge was identified and varieties were identified. An innovative programme was launched to conserve traditional roots and tubers through cultivation.  
  Awareness creation of cultivation and the use of traditional roots and tubers was carried out. Traditional farming and pest control methods such as kem, ritta etc were used and the traditional farming calendar was introduced. Organic fertilizer production and use was popularised. Appropriate soil conservation methods are used such as SALT system.  
  To ensure the continuation of the root and tuber cultivation, a seed bank system was introduced where farmers produced seed roots and seeds for next season. Technology was developed to produce flour from these roots and tubers and a number of products were made from the flour. Cakes, bread, sweets such as aluwa and murukku (bytes) are among the products.  
     
  For details of projects carried out by the CDC on traditional roots and tubers, visit Projects page.  
     
 
     
 

Awareness programmes were held for farmers

 

Planting material distributed among the farmers

 
         
     
 

Land prepared for cultivation of roots and tubers

 

A successful plantation of Butsarana Red variety

 
         
     
 

Harvesting a successful production

 

Marketing traditional roots and tubers

 
         
     
 

Roots and tubers are dried in order to make flour

 

A collection of food made out of flour from roots and tubers - bread, cakes, sweets and murukku.

 
 
     
   
   Conservation of traditional crop varieties  
     
  There are number of traditional crop varieties in Sri Lanka which are neglected by the modern day agriculture practices. These varieties have special characters that are useful in certain aspects.  
  The CDC promotes the cultivation of these traditionally cultivated crops such as, traditional rice varieties, vegetables, green leaves, and medicinal plants. The aim of this is to conserve these traditional food crops thorough cultivation and usage.  
 
         
         
 
   
   Promotion of organic agriculture  
     
  The use of modern conventional agricultural methods has adverse impacts on the environment and it has increased the cost of agriculture which eventually leads to a loss in farming. It has proven that this situation could be avoided through the practice of organic agriculture, both in subsistence and commercial levels.  
  The CDC took action to popularise organic agricultural practices among the community. Various composting methods and non-chemical pest control methods are introduced and promoted among the community. Traditional farming and pest control methods such as kem, ritta etc are also promoted. The usage of traditional and appropriate farming practices is also promoted.  
     
 
     
 

Women during a training in agriculture

 

Equipment provided for the farmers

 
         
     
 

Live fence to control damage by pest animals

 

Compost bin made out of local materials

 
         
     
 

Agro tower

 

Green leaves on a circular bed

 
         
     
  Bio gas plant   Bee keeping in home gardens  
         
     
 

A home garden

  Tank producing wormi-compost  
 
     
   
   Social mobilisation and empowerment  
     
  The community with which the CDC is working includes rural, low income and marginalised groups. The women participation is high in this community. The CDC took action to mobilise and empower this community.  
  One of the key steps taken was establishing and strengthening of small groups. 15 community based organizations are active by mid 2008. Savings are promoted and a revolving fund was established to provide loans at no or low interest. Several alternative income generating methods were introduced. Home garden management is also included in the activities. Special attention is paid for the protection of human rights of the people.  
     
 
     
  Audience during a meeting   Mrs. Gogamulla addressing a small group  
         
     
  Using PRA method during a mobilization programme   People presenting their views  
         
     
  An action during revolving fund   Women receiving a training of making flour from roots and fibres  
 
     
   
   Training Programmes  
     
  The CDC provides a number of trainings required by the community both in the area as well as other CBOs and NGOs. Following are some key trainings provided by the CDC.  
     
 

Cultivation of traditional roots and tubers
Organic farming/ eco-farming
Home garden management
Human rights of marginalised communities
 
     
  For details of Trainings conducted by the CDC on above mentioned areas, please visit Services page.  
     
 
     
  A training of wormi-composting   A training on traditional farming calendar  
 
     
   
   Awareness programmes  
     
  The aim of creating awareness is to empower the community through social mobilisation. Various types of awareness programmes such as lectures, exhibitions, seminars etc are being carried out in the area as well as in other areas. The topics covered in these programmes include roots and tubers cultivation, organic farming, health and general environment .  
     
 
     
  Educating children on the roots and tubers during the Environment Day exhibition (2007)   Making products from flour of roots and tubers during an exhibition (2007)  
         
     
  The stall if the CDC during an exhibition (2007)   Dr. Tissa Vitarana, Minister of Science and Technology visited the CDC stall during the Environment Day exhibition (2007)  
 
     
     
 

Home  About CDC  Management  Activities  Projects  Services  Roots & Tubers of Sri Lanka  Publications  News  Contacts

 
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
   

2008 Community Development Centre

Last updated: 15 September, 2008