“My husband cultivates onions from before we met …
In December 2010, however, due to bad weather, we lost the entire crop. It was hard, and to survive and buy back new bulbs to plant, my husband asked for a loan to an acquaintance. Are nearly three years that we have been paying and we still cannot pay off the debt with this man, my son was forced to go to work for him, that every month deducts more than half of the salary "to cover the debt" - he says - ... the truth is that we do not know how much longer we will have to pay..
If we received an Interlife’s toolkit with bulbs, seeds and a bigger yield, I could go and sell everything to the market, gaining more than what the sellers give us for our onions, and my son could come back with us, attend courses of organic Farming, helping his father or become a trader.”
- Muthu, peasant of Pudukkottai -
“When I was little more than a boy, new fertilizers and pesticides seemed the ideal solution to improve crop yields;
there was also an agricultural program promoted by the Government that invited us to use them ... but over time their effect is diminished and now to have the same crop on the same land, it takes twice as fertilizer. We were convinced that every season we would produce more, and yet year after year we have ruined our lands. "Time is of the neighbors told me about the Resource Centre of Adapakaran Sathiram telling me that there were applicable and proposed alternative methods to fertilize land: so I decided to go to feel what it was and they told me about the vermicompost ... initially I could not understand how it would work; I seemed to go back on the most modern fertilizers adopted by all, especially in the extensive farming, but I pushed my son, Ganesan, to apply to participate in the program TOOLKIT vermicompost. I saw him leave the house dejected on the first day: with so many economic problems and family on his shoulders, missed days of work to follow a training course meant for all of us not to eat; but already the following week, his attitude changed. He became excited, and threw himself heart and soul into the project. After 3 months Ganesan went accompanied by the staff of the training center, full of wooden crates, organic material of all types, screens, containers, bags and do not know what else with a big smile and said, "Here we go, we go! "I know, I was the one to convince him, but now I really wondered why we could have enough to live on with the work of the worms and selling bags of earth, and as a process so natural and centenary could ensure a future; Yet my son was sure that we would make it, and so we started to produce vermicompost and sell it! It is amazing, I did not expect such a request ... we had to increase production, and within a couple of months we got revenue, never seen before in many years of work: my niece was able to return to school and skipping meals is now a past habit. By now we all know the area and the farmers who use thank us with a smile when meeting us on the street and often ask "next Friday reserve me the better pack, like the one from the other time which allowed me to pull up onions that were a delight!”
- Palanikumar, farmer of Pudukkottai -
FLOWERS AND PLANTS TOOLKIT
“ "I'm a hard worker, I never discouraged, but I've been through really hard after the death of my husband. I live with my mother, my sister and my daughters ... all women in the house!
Yes, because my mother is too old to work, the girls last year were not able to go to school because we had too many expenses and too many problems, while my sister is called a day by an acquaintance who has a bank of vegetables in the market, however, happens very rarely! I rather go out before sunrise and get home late work in a plantation of sugar cane ... earning just $ 10 a week that are not enough to feed, clothe and care for my two little girls, Lakshmi, 13 years old, a young lady now, and Vinothini 8 years. Earlier this year, the meeting of the group of mutual-help female Sirugapatti, there was talk of the Toolkit Interlife. We made a written request on behalf of the whole group, and then I explicitly asked to participate in the program dedicated to the cultivation of flowers and plants. There is no woman in the whole India that, and if cannot grow a flower by itself, does not acquire at least one to use in your hair on holidays, as there is no girl who does not like a bouquet or essences to make themselves beautiful and perfume the body, or hostess who does not dream a flowering plant for their input, especially in cities where there is no place around the house for growing plants. I'm sure if I received the proper training and a Toolkit Flowers & Plants from Interlife Onlus, there would be no day without work! I would deal with cultivation, and my sister, who is a born seller, could deal with customers, could go to the market to sell them, and occasionally go up to Sivaganga to show our flowers to the ladies of the town! It would be a blessing that we are waiting for a long time: I take medication for the pain of my mother, the girls after school would learn the art of silent flowers, and we would not be struggling to live.”
- Chellayi of Sirugapatti -
“Three years ago I went up to the market to the peasants who came from outside to ask, so, out of curiosity, how much costs a bag of their mushrooms ..
I had heard from the lady from whom, from time to time, doing the cleaning, which she cooked the mushrooms at least 4 times a week for her children because it helps them in growth. It was this that prompted me to turn to those farmers and remember like now: I blushed with embarrassment on hearing the answer. How could I even think of spending so much for a bag of mushrooms, when there are days when I have nothing to feed my children? Today I laugh when I think about it. Not much time has passed, but the life of my family has changed dramatically. Ten months ago, my husband received the opportunity to participate in the program Toolkit Mushrooms Interlife Onlus. For several weeks he attended a training course at the Resource Centre of Adapakaran Sathiram, where he was taught how to grow mushrooms, how to collect, how to dry them, how to store them, and, most important of all ... how to sell them directly and to a good price, without getting lost in expenses, accounts, and deception on the part of the merchants! After the course, they delivered the material for the construction of the greenhouse where we could start our business, and we built it right behind our house, and in a few days my joy was uncontainable. When we were called by the Resource Centre for the spores then, I was so excited, and, returning home with my husband I had the impression that we had collected a precious treasure: and today I am convinced!! Already from next month in fact, we have been manufacturing and trading fresh mushrooms and dried, ranging literally steals! In a short time we have achieved a constant production that made the mushrooms available at a price acceptable to all the families of the village; Unfortunately we cannot yet meet all the demands and it saddens me to say to the women of the area that mushrooms are terminated: having seen them on my children, I know the benefits they can have on nutrition of children that for so long ate only rice and a few vegetables. But I am confident! I'm sure that like us other families will soon receive a Toolkit Interlife and forget poverty. Given the revenues in the first half we got with the sale of our mushroom, we plan to set aside, within the next year, a nice sum with which to donate a new toolkit mushrooms to another family in the village near: besides being able to sell food so valuable to the health and growth of children, give a Toolkit to a couple in trouble as it was me and my husband, it would be for us the best way to thank those who, from Italy, has decided to support us by giving a treasure so valuable, such as the Toolkit Mushrooms.
- Kaaliammaal of Valaseripatti -