A GESI team worked in Rajasthan with the NGO Prayatna Samiti to develop an institution that will re-establish farmers with power over their agricultural practices and extension in the Rawatpura Watershed Development Area. Many communities in the southern region of Rajasthan are now suffering from extreme resource depletion in terms of soil resources, pastureland plant-life, and water table stability. Many of these effects have been felt due to the adoption of conventional industrial agricultural practices in these communities—which are resource heavy practices. Team members spent time in discussion with farmers, understanding their practices and current lives through focus groups and farm visits. Through these talks, team members learned that farmers were interested in a group that could help them re-establish power of their own agricultural practices and extension in the name of a more sustainable and low cost system.
Students produced a structural document that acts as the conceptual base for the Farmer Field School. Additionally, a Training of Trainer series was started, holding two trainings in order to build the institution around community leadership. Community coordinators will be trained who will then be responsible for facilitating the FFS groups. After the Training of Trainers, 25 Farmer Field Schools will be created within the Watershed Area.