Selection of cultivators:
After the initiation of the project, the women collectors of sea weed were contacted. These women showed interest in cultivating shaibal and adopting the modern technologies, if they were provided with training. The project officials had identified and listed about 200 women farmers interested in growing shaibal.
Designing a training course:
The project designed a 1-day training course. The course content comprised of improved methods of cultivation of shaibal, its processing and marketing. The training was organized and conducted by the project. In addition to project officials, subject matter specialists from Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI), Forest Research Institute (FRI), Upazila Fisheries Officer of Cox’s Bazar were invited as guest speakers. A practical session was also included to demonstrate the cultivation method.
Conduct of training programs:
Altogether 7 courses were conducted during the year 2020. Four courses were offered in January and March 2020 and 3 courses in November and December 2020. In each course, 25 women cultivators attended these courses as participants. Therefore 100 women cultivators, 25 in one batch, took part in the training programs held in January/March. Other 75 women cultivators participated in 3 courses during November-December 2020. Altogether 175 women cultivators were trained during the year 2020.
Cultivation of Shaibal:
Out of 100 women farmers trained in early part of the year, 55 participants were selected for cultivation. They were directly assisted in their cultivation to develop their areas as demonstration plots. From the 75 participants trained in November-December, 25 women farmers were selected and provided guidance to develop their areas as demonstration plots too. For developing demonstration plots, these farmers were provided with some supports and assistances from the project. These were described below.
Supports provided to the farmers:
All the selected farmers were provided with materials and inputs for their cultivation. The materials included were 14 kgs of rope, 4 bamboos, 20 floats, 1 drum, 1 tab (balti), 1 knife, net, packets of polythene and one pair of gumboot for each farmer. Necessary technical guidance was provided to them and their cultivation processes were closely supervised.