The Learning Farm

We visited The Learning Farm today in Cianjur, near Bogor.  The Learning Farm is dedicated to taking poor students from a rough background and teaching them organic farming as well as other ‘life skills’  In the past, LDSC has helped with curriculum as well as purchasing desks, lockers and tables.  Now their water source is bad (too high in zinc) and they are researching various solutions.  Since LDSC has a very active clean water initiative, we were there today to see what we could do or bring anything to the table. Their proposed solution seemed very expensive so we went to gather more information for jthe Church hydrologist in Utah that consults on these projects.  Since this isn’t a Major Initiative Project (where a village or district with hundreds or thousands of people are affected)  he won’t be directly involved, but we (and they) clearly need his help and he has agreed to offer whatever assistance he can.  So grateful for that!

A good neighbor has allowed them to tap into his well for now – but that can’t be long term.
This is the neighbor that owns the well
The street where the well is located
The water is then pumped 100 meters or so to the Farm’s tanks.
A longer-term solution is to go further away to this spring and create a lagoon to collect the water and then pump it 300 meters to their tanks.
DeeAnn walking through the brush to the spring location
Emily (PR Director), Julian (water system designer) and the owner of the spring
A second spring is also possible.
We’re standing where the springs are, and the Farm main facility is the larger white building 300 meters away .
DeeAnn with Agus, our driver.  A casual bystander is looking on…
DeeAnn with Emily
Getting down to the second spring
Pointing to the spring, obviously asking a very intelligent question…
Doing some math on water flow rates with Emily and Julian

After our tour of the water sources we met with Nona, TLF Director in their offices.  She’s a terrific lady (she has a Master’s in Psychology from Harvard) who is doing her best with limited funds to do a great work with these kids.  Julian is not a hydrologist and is doing the best he can, but water problems can be difficult to solve and he needs help.

Now we’l go back and see if we can get some input from our hydrologist and perhaps some ideas and suggestions.  We need to do our best to NOT just solve their problem.  They have their own ideas, but their idea (1) might be too expensive and/or (2) not be the best solution for the long term.  The last thing we want to do is help solve their problem and then a year from now, they’re back because the solution was a short-term fix.

In the meantime, the Farm continues to make progress on their aquaculture project:

They plan to grow catfish and parrotfish.  Behind the fish tanks is the new animal husbandry barn for rabbits and goats.
I was teasing the workers that it looked like they were in jail.  They thought that was pretty funny.




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