A moment of peace: One woman using food scraps to change a village

07 June 2021

Topics: Indonesia

Faizah is one of the women involved in CWS’s climate adaptive skills training program / Act for Peace

Two weeks was all Faizah had to wait. 

She’d seen it done before in her training, so she thought, "Why not try this myself at home?”

Using food scraps from her kitchen bin, she waited patiently as the fermentation process took place. Two weeks later, she had a homemade organic fertiliser that she could use to feed and nurture the crops in her yard. 

And the vegetables loved it. She’d created a self-sufficient organic system, and the best part about it was it didn’t cost her family a thing.

So, what does a 48-year-old woman, wife, and mother of four do with her new-found skills? 

She shares them with her community - a community whose livelihoods continue to be uprooted by climate disasters, and now the COVID-19 pandemic.

Faizah lives in Bulubete Village – a remote community in Central Sulawesi. Still in recovery from the 2018 earthquake which struck Indonesia, and faced with frequent flash floods and slow-onset droughts, farmers in her village are getting by on less than $20 per week.

Thankfully, Faizah’s village is now taking part in the DREAM program (which stands for Disaster Resilience through Enhanced Adaptive Measures), run by our partner, Christian World Service. The program is building up local capacity to adapt to climate change challenges. Teaching women to make organic fertiliser and pesticides is just one of the ways they’re doing this. 

Thanks to the gifts of our supporters, and the help of the Australian Government through the Australian NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP), this work is possible.

Seeing her own plants flourish, Faizah is now passing on her skills to other women in her village. She shares tips on planting fruits and vegetables, so more families can decrease their expenses and gradually save money like her family has. 

She says,

I aspire to share my spirit and to motivate other women in Bulubete Village also, to think creatively and innovatively in the midst of existing conditions, so they can help their husband or themselves to meet their family’s daily needs.

In a culture where women traditionally take the role of housewife, the DREAM program is doing much more than building climate resilience in these communities: it’s building the resilience of women. With resilient women, comes thriving communities – and that’s a dream we can all get behind.