Meepu, mother and spouse to six children, is a farmer and cook in the MaeTaChang Watershed of Thailand. She felt hopeless because of how expensive and unsuccessful her plant's growth was due to old monoculture farming techniques. She tried countless experiments cultivating different seeds that all died due to lack of knowledge of how to change her planting ways. She also noticed the chemical usage on her plants affecting her health. Meepu started to worry how she would provide for her family with her lack of success.
“We used to put chemicals on the agriculture we were producing before that was affecting our health, killing trees, and destroying the environment entirely. No one wanted to change in MaeTaChang because of our reliance on pesticides to make sure we could grow enough food each year to feed our families. That was until Plant With Purpose showed us how to grow without pesticide usage and keep our plants alive for even longer periods of time.”
Meepu joined a Purpose group where she learned to practice soil conservation plots and how to apply agroforestry techniques. “Although I have not been practicing these techniques for that long, I have already seen the difference after planting fruit trees and bamboo. The soil fertility is already improving.” Meepu has realized the importance of protecting the environment to not only benefit her own family but the entire community. She has stopped using chemicals on her land and has built fire breaks in community forests, showing others in the watershed that change is possible. “We must give back to the environment to benefit from it.”
Although Meepu has only been a part of Plant With Purpose for one month, she is proud of her agroforest plot and all the opportunities that it will create for her family’s future planting fruit trees and bamboo, especially with long-term food security. She is excited to be an example for her community that you can change how you farm with just a little bit of help in the right direction.
“I am grateful to God for blessing my family and giving us Plant With Purpose. They have shown us how we are the planters but God is our caretaker. I know that both Plant With Purpose and God will continue to support my journey changing my agricultural techniques.”