Finalizing 2017: Medicial plants project

During 2017, the group of women from Tonchintlán, who has produced remedies with medicinal plants for more than 5 years, and the newly formed group from Ixcotitlán, were accompanied with several activities. The work dynamics of these groups took a considerable turn during this year, because the main promoter of the groups left the region. For this reason, it was essential to support both groups by encouraging teamwork, self-organization and, initiating them into the management of their resources to give a continuous production of their remedies. It is important to mention, the valuable participation that other groups have had by joining our work, sharing their experiences, their challenges, and the way in which they have solved different situations. This has been crucial for the women's groups of Ixcotitlán and Tonchintlán to know other forms of organized and collective work.


Summer course: Environmental Education

The interest shown in the surveys carried out months ago to the young people of 4 communities of Tianguistengo was reflected this summer, since a "Course/Pilot Workshop on Environmental Education" was held for young people between 8 and 13 years old in the community of Tonchintlán of the municipality of Tianguistengo. This summer course was carried out through a 3 week stay in the community (from July 17th to August 4th). This occasion and as it has been fostered by Agroecol, we had the participation of a multidisciplinary work team, with a great commitment during the development of each activity; from the panning phase to the field work.


Medicinal plants mounting

On this accompanying visitation, much of the time was spent checking the previously pressed plants, which would be ready for mounting. The rest of the time was spent on initiatives proposed at the last visiting round for the production of composters by the peasants. Likewise, the activities performed by the student from the UTSH, who did a professional stay at Agroecol, were assesed. This time, between the various activities, workshops, and meetings, 14 participants attended (9 women and 5 men).


Wooden presses and medicinal plants

After the completion of the organic fertilizer production goals propounded since May, on this visiting round, the efforts given to this and to the group of women project on medicinal plants are renewed. This time, the production of wooden plant presses was accomplished by both communities, which ought to be an essential starting point for the coming projects and workshops. Otherwise and then again at the discretion of the peasants, the production of a composter under the principle of "mano vuelta" (intensive collective work) for the gathering of materials is proposed. This is actually the continuation of the collective and organized work carried out in recent months. The total participation during this visiting-round was of 23 people (17 women and 6 men).


Compost ready: How are we going to use it?

The current system of guidance in the communities of Ixcotitlán and Tonchintlán have been enabling us to establish a more concrete dialogue with the landowner with regard to the experience that has been formed while using the fertilizer, besides taking a more tangible look at the results of the work that has been done during the past months. During this fifth visit the quantity of organic fertilizer produced by both communities was assessed to be 2350 kg. There was a total of 27 participants present at the different visits and group reunions (9 men and 18 women).


Proving the quality of the composters

The broad collaboration with different institutions like the UTSH and organizations such as Ver-d enrich the counseling visits of Ixcotitlán and Tonchintlán in a very positive way. For this visit, there are already lists available for the first 4 fertilizers, on top of the fact that the group reunions have grown to a total of 3, including the one of the women and there are 6 visits of homes and terrains. Finally, we have started to work with the next project of the womens group: "use of medicinal plants". There are 22 participants in this ocasion (11 men and 11 women.


Testing new fertilizers

Besides the construction of the fertilizers, we have focussed on broadening the methods of the organic fertilizers obtaining, in this case complementary. Moreover, we increased the number of fertilizers, since in Ixcotitlán, due to one the the landowners initiative and another support, another composter was constructed. At the same time, several visits to homes and terrains and 2 group reunions took place, counting a total of 22 persons (11 men and 12 women).


Joining efforts: Configuration of a group of women

The leadership and participation that the group of women has assumed has been a watershed for the progress and obtaining of results of the project. This has added up to different and diverse ideas concerning the process as well as the working methods in groups. During this visit, another composter was added, lead by the recently formed group of Tonchintlán women. Furthermore, different visits to homes and terrains were carried out, 2 group reunions, comprising 22 participants in total (8 men and 14 women).