Replenish, restore and reap


This was the first time I had ever seen anything like the ICIMOD (International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development) Demonstration and Training Centre in Kathmandu, Nepal. Students of Agriculture would benefit hugely by a visit, to grasp the integrated agricultural systems which the centre has organised to help farmers, as possibilities for livelihood and sustainable farming practices.

The ICIMOD Demonstration and Training Centre at Godavari, on the southern slopes of the Kathmandu Valley, was set up in March 1993. It is situated on 30 hectares of land which was given to them by the former king of Nepal. The activities at the centre follow ICIMOD’s central mandate which is to “help promote the development of an economically and environmentally sound mountain ecosystem and to improve the living conditions of the mountain populations in the Hindukush Himalayas(HKH) in the eight countries of India, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, Myanmar, Nepal and Pakistan”.

For a young student of agricultural practices, the centre provides practical experience to the more theoretical classes they attend. This is a place where different technologies and practices, useful for sustainable development can be tested, selected and demonstrated.

ICIMOD’s specific objectives are:

*To test and modify technologies and methodologies for sustainable land use

*To demonstrate viable options for the rehabilitation of degraded land

*To collect germoplasms of multipurpose plants

*To provide training facilities to improve skills and the technical knowledge of farmers, development workers and students to use proven technologies and new approaches for sustainable land use and income generation

When ICIMOD first received the site, it was heavily degraded. Today the degraded forest and shrub land has been gradually restored to a semi-natural forest; selected slopes have been converted into crop bearing terrace land using contour hedgerows of nitrogen fixing plants; orchards of different fruit bearing plants have been grown; besides demonstration sites for agricultural technology, income generating activity and water harvesting techniques have been set up.

As you walk around the property you find various renewable energy technologies are on display in collaboration with local NGOs.  In the large training centre, the number of approaches being demonstrated and tested are on the rise.

The centre believes in community outreach, with off-site demonstration and training in the Phulchowki community, in collaboration with an NGO partner. Since organic farming is practised here, the test results are perfect in response to farmers who cannot afford commercial agricultural practices.

The programmes are available at the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development Demonstration and Training Centre at Godavari, GPO Box 3226, Kathmandu, Lalitpur, Kathmandu, Nepal. Ph: +977-1-5003222, email: info@icimod.org, Website: www. icimod.org Godavari, Ph: +977-1- 5560289, 5560991

ICIMOD’s major activities

*Vegetation management

*Soil management

*Water management

*Income generation through high value cash crops, horticulture and bee keeping

*Livestock and fish

*Biodiversity

*Renewable energy technologies

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