On weekend, our team decided to get some agricultural work experience with our host families and try our hands at wheat farming. Given that all the food that our community eats is grown and produced locally, it’s no surprise that agriculture is the main source of livelihoods for Patpati. Our volunteers set off, and were shown the ropes by their host families, who expertly taught us how to work safely and efficiently. Armed with Nepal’s ubiquitous tool, the hasiya (a curved knife), we dived headfirst into a world of wheat! Farming with our host families in the gorgeous Nepali countryside, with the morning mist rolling in the depths of the valleys was an amazing experience, and one that is sure to stick with the team for a long time to come.
Another experience that left a lasting memory came when we had to take the newly cut wheat back across the village back to our homes. This was done using another one of Nepal’s most popular tools – the namlo (a harness that fits across your forehead, and is used for carrying loads). Our team felt like locals kitted out with a namlo full of wheat, and our new look was met with a great deal of laughter, particularly from community members who found the whole affair incredibly amusing!
Our community bonding time helping to farm has been beneficial to the community, and to our volunteers. Watching the village work together in field while farming highlighted the importance of community networks, and teamwork. Not only this, but the whole experience was an interesting insight into Nepali culture, and a different way of life.
Written by U.K volunteer, Mark (November Charlie 3)