Lao PDR

Increasing Food Security and Promoting Licit Crop Production and Small Farmer Enterprise Development in the Lao PDR (XSPK26) on-going ( NEW)

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Background and Objectives

The project is oriented to addressing the pressing needs related to the current opium scenario, specifically focusing on poverty alleviation through improving food security levels in selected communities in Oudomxay province in Lao PDR.

It will target interventions in the areas of i) food security and increasing legal production of agriculture for food security and income generation ii) development of small farmer associations and cooperatives iii) prevention of opium production, consumption and treatment.

There will be two different target categories in the communities:

• First, target groups/communities currently active in the cultivation of opium poppy, focusing on reaching a stable food security situation. Achieving food security is also a pre-condition to a sustainable reduction of opium production.

• Second, for the ex-opium communities that have passed food deficiency/shortage status including the target communities of the AD projects that have been supported by BMZ, the provision of further support to develop capacities for the creation of farmers organizations, local entrepreneurship and small enterprises to assist small farmers in reintegration into the mainstream of economic and business development.

Synergies and Partnerships

To generate more impact and sustain the AD interventions in the target areas, the project will be implemented in partnership with the Thai Royal Project Foundation for technical support and assistance to be provided to target communities in Oudomxay province of Lao PDR. A strong partnership will be created with these projects as well as other relevant partner organizations including UNDP, WFP, EC, GTZ, GAA in order to leverage seminars/workshops, best practices and technical assistance. Equally important will be the existing use of professional and technical expertise and know-how from other UNODC Alternative Development projects.

Target Groups

With the above mentioned two target groups, the project will build in a strategy to promote gender equality and participation of women. Gender disaggregated data will be compiled during the baseline data collection and community assessment phase and will continue to be compiled during project planning and implementation. As a result of the information and data collected during the baseline assessment, a gender-sensitive approach (gender equality strategy) will be developed and mainstreamed into all objectives, strategies and activities of the three project components ensuring that women are equally taking advantage of all aspects of the project.

This approach will be used to guide the planning of interventions aimed at increasing the role and participation of women in the project, making sure that special needs of women, the current work share and conditions that enable the participation of women, are considered and included in the whole planning, implementation and monitoring process. Those aspects will be advocated and monitored in the routine reporting of project activities and progress

Target Area and Target Criteria

This project target covers 3 districts in Oudomxay: Xay, La and Hoon which are classified as most vulnerable in the national poverty eradication plan. Approximately 50 villages in the 3 districts will be selected as target villages/communities based on the following criteria:

  • Poverty level of the (former) opium communities.
  • Accessibility; from a market development perspective maximum walking distance 2-3 hours.
  • Existing traditional handicraft activities and NTFP sources as basis for alternative

income generation

  • Minimum infrastructure or current development projects under way to facilitate market access
  • Existing Village Development Committee or similar community structures and openness for development of their villages. The Village Development Committee is comprised of the Village Chief and the Deputy Village Chief, village natural leaders, representatives of key development agencies including agriculture, health, education, and the Women Union. The Committee has overall responsibilities for community planning and development.  The outreach and inclusion of further surrounding communities and villages that are currently less accessible for some project components (e.g. infrastructure) will be discussed at the planning workshop.

Expected Outcomes:

  • Outcome1:  Food security and licit agricultural productionin former and current opium growing communities increased.

Indicators:

• Number of households facing food insecurity is reduced by 50% at the end of the project in comparison with the baseline survey.

• Period of food insecurity for the poorest and most vulnerable target villages is reduced from six months to three months by the end of the project.

• Licit agricultural and food production in the target communities are increased by ten percent per year.

  • Outcome 2: Small farmers' associations and cooperatives, enterprise and local entrepreneurship developed.

Indicators:

• Number of new local enterprises and business initiatives
• Number of new farmer associations/cooperatives
• Number of new marketing channels.
• Number of farmers and local villagers received training and improved management and entrepreneurship skills

  • Outcome 3:  Opium production and consumption prevented through intensive awareness campaigns, provision of treatment services and local capacity building for drug prevention and monitoring.

Indicators:

• Area under illicit opium poppy cultivation is sustained and/or reduced
• Number of opium abusers is sustained and/or reduced
• Number of opium addicts receiving treatment increased
• Percentage of female opium addicts receiving treatment increased
• Number of community volunteers received training on gender sensitive drug prevention and monitoring