Engagement in India results in specific projects
With an annual grant of 30,000 Euros, AMAZONE promotes the work of World Hunger Aid where agriculture for small farmers is the focus. In this way, hard manual work in the fields can be eased and harvest yields increased.
Since 2016 a task force exists at AMAZONEN-Werke calling itself “Project India”. It consists of 14 members, among them Bettina Dreyer who represents the owner family, Rene Hüggelmeier as personnel manager and 13 trainees and dual students who are dealing with the problems of Indian farmers. Amazone operates in cooperation with World Hunger Aid and looks after approximately 50 project villages in India.
The motto of the group is “aid for self-aid”. Their task is the development of effective tools which can be utilised by the subsistence farmers in India.
From 16th July, 2017 through to 23rd July, 2017 this task force went on an exciting trip into a region unknown to them. The flight route was from Düsseldorf via Dubai to Kolkata. From there they went by train to Deogah to get to the project destination.
For this World Hunger Aid project, AMAZONE sees itself as exactly the right contact partner because the competences of AMAZONEN-Werke in the area of agriculture are ideal. In cooperation with the World Hunger Aid, the task force processed case studies where the problems of the farmers were described. The task was to try and find a solution for these problems, however, those solutions led to additional questions which had to be clarified locally.
In order to get an idea of the local situation, five AMAZONE employees, among them Mr. Hüggelmeier and four trainees, travelled into the West Bengal region (India) where this project of World Hunger Aid is already being supported in the villages for more than three years.
After the first day in Kolkata, the task force went to West Bengal with the Indian project manager Anshuman, where they were accompanied by other employees of World Hunger Aid. After staying in West Bengal, the employees of AMAZONEN-Werke visited one of the project villages. Here individual farmers and projects were introduced who, with the aid of previous donations, showed enormous development. With much pride, machinery, fields and compost heaps, which served as fertiliser for the fields (picture 1), were shown off. In a session with the villagers, the developments and the results of the previous three years were introduced (picture 3). After a joint lunch with the villagers, the task force went to the Field Office where farmers meet and take part in training courses.
Impressed by the small fields and the kind of cultivation the travellers could gather many interesting and important impressions and one thought about what one could do to simplify the cultivation of these small fields on the one side and on the other side to maintain such a high standard that a farmer could nourish his family. Questions which will represent an important point of discussion within the task force of AMAZONEN-Werke in Hasbergen.
Next day, full of energy, the fields were entered to get to know the life of a local farmer. Whether planting rice, replanting millet or ploughing with oxen (picture 2). The task force, without any trepidation, put itself as far as possible inside the skin of the male and female farmers. Outsiders cannot imagine how much work and time a small field of 30 square metres requires. The minute which a plough in Germany hardly even requires means a whole working day with an ox in India.
After the task force had experienced the hard work on their own body for themselves, the day was finished with a mutual dinner where the individual impressions were relived over again. Due to the many impressions of the previous days, the AMAZONE employees developed an idea how one could ease work of the farmers in the fields. After first drafts had been carried out and were discussed within a small group, these were introduced to the farmers’ association (picture 4). After hot debates with the farmers, they accepted the case studies and the newly developed ideas with joy and enthusiasm.
With many sights and adventures experienced by the AMAZONE group over the preceding days they went home again.
The next challenge is already waiting with the realisation of the ideas gained in India.
Further information you will find in the "Welthungerhilfe" Magazine 3/2017: PDF Download