Sri Lanka - Smallholder Tea and Rubber Revitalization Project (STARR) – December 2021
Padma Nandani is mother to a 5-year-old girl. She owns a plot of land, where she has been growing tea for the past three years.
After she and her husband welcomed their daughter, Padma was determined to find ways to improve their livelihood. That is when she turned to growing tea plants. This has allowed her to increase her income and, with these extra funds, has started to build a house for her family.
Padma is proud of her achievements, from taking care of her daughter and helping her with her schoolwork to managing her tea plant growing business on her own. Both she and her husband, who is also a farmer, but also does contract jobs, are focused on finishing their house and putting their daughter through school.
Through the STaRR project, Padma was able to set-up her tea nursery which has enabled her and her family to have a steady income. With the knowledge and experience she gained while engaging in the activities of the project, she has become a local entrepreneur.
At present Padma has started a commercial nursery to produce tea and has been able to register with the Tea Small Holders Development Authority. Her plant nursery has a capacity of 30,000 plants and the Damro Company has already placed an order for 20,000 plants.
The IFAD-funded Smallholder Tea and Rubber Revitalization Project aims to improve food security, increase incomes, and strengthen the resilience of poor rural people in Sri Lanka, all while ensuring that the smallholders are the key decision-makers of the project. By promoting organization among smallholders to produce and market tea, supporting them in improving rubber production and processing, seeking a better link to markets, and facilitating smallholders’ access to rural financing, this project will benefit approximately 32,000 smallholder households.
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