Green Shoot Foundation's FASE ProgramThe Green Shoots Foundation aims to reduce international poverty in seven countries by implementing three programs: ELSE, FASE and MAME. This Foundation focuses particularly on the FASE program, or Food, Agriculture and Social Entrepreneurship. The FASE program aims to educate individuals in business and agricultural work to promote productivity within the economy. About 80 students and 10 farmers from the Philippines and Cambodia have enrolled in the AgriTech Centre.

Reason for Action

The Philippines and Cambodia both heavily depend on the success of annual harvests to improve the economy. About 40% of Filipino citizens work in the agricultural industry. This industry contributes to around 20% of the GDP and 70% of total output in the Philippines. On the other hand, 22% of Cambodia’s agricultural work contributes to the GDP.

Although the agriculture industry is large, both countries face many difficulties. The Philippines lacks programs to ensure food security, connections to industries and efficient harvesting technologies. Furthermore, natural disasters such as typhoons and droughts damage agricultural facilities, supply markets and harm farmers themselves. Flooding also severely affects Cambodia. A massive flood cost around $355 million in damage to agriculture in Cambodia. Thus, the FASE program emerged to combat these harmful effects.

FASE in the Philippines

The Green Shoots Foundation collaborated with Gawad Kalinga to establish the FASE program in Southeast Asia. Gawad Kalinga is a nonprofit that aims to end international poverty in the Philippines. It works to provide education and employment opportunities to all citizens. Additionally, it has reached over 3,000 communities and fed over 100,000 students in schools through various programs. This organization has taken great steps in stabilizing the country’s workforce and economy.

The FASE program sends volunteers from the United States and England to the Philippines to provide training sessions. Volunteers teach people business and micro-financing information. Additionally, the FASE program provides platforms to inspire citizens to become entrepreneurs and support agricultural farmers.

Furthermore, incorporating a university on a farm allows farmers to obtain an education and promote their business. This program has supported over 1 million people and created over 300 jobs. Additionally, over 80,000 children attend school and 60 social enterprises have undergone establishment.

FASE in Cambodia

The Green Shoots Foundation has made a difference in Cambodia as well. The FASE program helped build the Agri-Tech Centre in North West Cambodia. Additionally, it focuses on environmental sustainability, training young children and preparing them for a future in the agricultural business.

Community-based Integrated Development is an NGO that works with the Green Shoots Foundation in Cambodia. Both organizations introduced the FASE program in Oddar Meanchey, a province in Cambodia. Furthermore, it provides training to improve agricultural opportunities and GDP. The Agri-Tech Centre has aided in establishing six sustainable enterprises as well.

In addition, the FASE program collaborates with the Agriculture Skills in Public Schools Project. The organizations discuss the most efficient farming styles to implement in the youth curriculum. Additionally, it creates irrigation systems and ponds to improve water accessibility and provide farmers with a suitable work environment. Children continue to learn farming skills to help improve the agricultural sector in Cambodia.

The Green Shoots Foundation and the Agriculture and Social Entrepreneurship program help advance agricultural sectors in the Philippines and Cambodia. Through support from the international community, the Foundation works to train and inspire citizens to become entrepreneurs. The Green Shoots Foundation continues to work to reduce international poverty and expand its influence in more countries.

– Sylvia Boguniecki
Photo: With Permission from Green Shoots Foundation

Green Shoots Foundation is Fighting Poverty
Founded in 2010, the Green Shoots Foundation has been working toward poverty relief through holistic and sustainable development programs. An additional focus on bolstering economies and education helps empower the areas of Africa and Asia the foundation specializes in. The Green Shoots Foundation is fighting poverty by using accountability and transparency to achieve its goals. It organizes its missions into three particular programming areas:

  • Education Loans & Social Entrepreneurship (ELSE): This programming area works to enhance children’s education by promoting education in urban slums, fighting against the gender education gap and promoting social enterprises and urban entrepreneurship.
  • Food, Agriculture & Social Entrepreneurship (FASE): The ultimate objective in this programming area is to revitalize rural communities through agricultural training, sustainable gardens and social enterprise missions.
  • Medical Assistance & Medical Education (MAME): This programming area combats HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases. MAME works with HIV professionals to transfer medical knowledge to locals and improve treatment accessibility.

The Food, Agriculture & Social Entrepreneurship Sector (FASE)

The Food, Agriculture & Social Entrepreneurship sector (FASE) of the Green Shoots Foundation is fighting poverty by working to restimulate rural economies through teaching sustainable agricultural skills and supporting business development.

Specific objectives characterize the goals of FASE and how they plan on improving the development in rural areas. These include:

  • Addressing a lack of education in the countryside
  • Promoting sustainable farming techniques
  • Addressing a lack of social capital in the countryside
  • Promoting rural entrepreneurship

FASE in the Philippines and Cambodia

FASE has completed notable work in the Philippines and Cambodia. In the Philippines, it is working to promote business opportunities for food and agriculture, as well as implement social innovation platforms such as the Enchanted Farm. The Enchanted Farm works to stimulate economic growth in different areas and simultaneously fight against poverty and food insecurity. Work in the Philippines has resulted in six-month long volunteer missions to help two different businesses that the Enchanted Farm is developing. In Cambodia, work has focused around horticulture education and environmental sustainability; 2014 proved to be a prominent year in FASE’s work as it implemented the Agricultural Skills in Public Schools (ASPUS) Project. Then, in 2018, the Agri-tech Training Center took the spotlight as the primary location for rural development and certified horticulture education in northwest Cambodia.

The Agri-tech Training Center

The Agri-tech Training Center serves as a community learning center that offers both training areas and demonstrations connected to rural development. These lessons have the intention of benefitting the public’s knowledge on agriculture. The center offers workshops on microfinance, nutrition and food growing. The center hopes to provide access to sustainable farming practices, improve the application of rural development skills in an ecofriendly way and enhance the capacity of young farmers for enterprise development. The organization also partners with five different local companies in North West Cambodia to help bolster its economy and build meaningful connections in the community. Each year, the center targets to train at least 200 local, young students. The Agri-tech Training Center advocates that training these young people will lead to local problem solving and increase entrepreneurship in the rural area.

The Green Shoots Foundation is fighting poverty through its work helping rural communities develop their economies through food and agriculture, education and medical aid. FASE’s vocational training staff at the Agri-tech Training Center has been working tirelessly to educate those in North West Cambodia on how to better themselves and their communities. Through the work of this foundation, people living in impoverished areas are able to combat hunger and bring themselves out of generational poverty.

– Hope Shourd
Photo: Flickr