Not only has the Israeli-Palestinian conflict taken a toll on mobility in Palestine, it has often separated Palestinian farmers physically from one another.
As Palestinian communities remain fragmented by military checkpoints, Israeli settlements and a 420-mile separation wall, farmers in Palestine have often found themselves isolated and out of touch with the latest developments and technologies in agriculture.
Given the scarcity of land, water and financial resources, Palestinian farmers benefit a great deal from sharing with each other.
Connecting Farmers in Palestine
Knowledge and resource sharing across farming communities is fundamental to all of Anera’s agriculture programming. For nearly five decades Anera has worked with agricultural cooperatives in Palestine, providing loans, equipment, training and other vital support.
Through these local agricultural cooperatives, Palestinian farmers have the opportunity to share equipment, monitor the use of scarce resources, like water, and learn good farming practices from each other.
Most recently, Anera helped Palestinian farmers establish the very first farmers’ cooperative focusing on wastewater irrigation in the West Bank. The growing membership receives training and awareness sessions from Anera as part of its treated wastewater reuse program in the Jenin area. Anera also provided the cooperative with equipment and seeds.
In 2012-14, in partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture, Anera embarked on a unique program that introduced basic knowledge-sharing tools to keep farmers across the West Bank and Gaza connected and up to date. The program produced a series of short films documenting the best farming practices, a feature-length documentary, two first-of-a-kind farmers’ conferences, and pages on social media for sharing materials and ideas.