When we hear statistics that 1 in every 9 children dies from a hunger related issue or that over 2 billion people out of the ~7.4 billion estimated to be on earth don't get even 1 meal a day while every 12 seconds a child dies of hunger related causes....
...We feel overwhelmed
What could we possibly do to help this situation? Overpopulation feels drastically out of our hands as does feeing the world.
It is rare to have the opportunity to visit a place that is actually addressing these issues & etching away at them.
ECHO is working day by day
To End World Hunger
Watch our Video to learn more:
Our video includes: Food Forests, Raised Beds, Hand Crank Well Pump, Innovation Rice Growing, Animal Tractors, & Obscure Food Crops to help aid humanity!
This is our video sharing some of the highlights of the practical food growing & land management systems at ECHO with our synopsis. Hope you enjoy & that this helps in inspiring humanity!
Continue reading for practical solutions that enliven and enrich the world!
It is our hope that even 10 people will be inspired by this post or learn a new idea that they want to research/implement in their own lives!! Each one teach one!
They do this through their extensive research labs located in Tampa, Florida and Nigeria, Sierra Leon and Thailand.
In these labs they research "best growing practices" and innovative techniques for worldwide crops from Rice to Amaranth, to more obscure, explorative crops we'll detail below. After they have honed these techniques and "field tested them", they send people into the field to humbly offer what they've learned in the areas of need. Of course, it can be difficult for farmers who have been doing one system for generations to adopt a new idea, but, if it works, slowly it takes hold.
Nopal Flowers and Young Amaranth
Slash & Mulch Demonstration Garden
This is an effective and simple method for transitioning land into food production. The common method is burning biomass, whereas this methods returns the organic matter to the soil food web. This helps to increase soil biodiversity, conserve moisture and maintain fertility.
High Efficiency Cook Stoves
The issues associated with open fires and ineffienct cooking stoves are numerous and impactful. Echo promotes and distributes several models for efficient stoves. These stoves address issues associated with lack of fuel (by drastically decreasing the amount of fuel used) and most significantly reduce harmful emissions due to a cleaner more complete combustion. The eyes and lungs of so many (mostly women and children) have been damaged due to inefficient stoves. Stoves like these can make a huge difference for billions of people.
They call this the ECHO effect
As the method takes hold, it ripples out touching many lives and transforming agriculture in the communities, affectively alleviating hunger and empowering the people!!The vision and model for "each one teach one" moved us deeply. Check out their video highlighting their vision. We were both brought to tears while watching it, as it touched something visceral and close to our hearts.
Papaya Fruit and Flower
We took a tour of their over 50 acre Food Forest (We also went to another Food Forest in Florida- read more about that here, Experimental Gardens, Terraces, Tilapia Ponds, and so much more. We took video and photos and through this, we'll try to give you an overview of what we learned and were inspired by. Between the 2 of us Ini and I have likely visited over a hundred innovative permaculture farms around the world and we have to say that we were very impressed with the breadth of demonstration at ECHO!
Duck Coop Over Tilapia Pond
Tilapia and Duck Pond
The pond was showcasing a good example of an integrated food system. The bird's coop was located above the pond that was host to duckweed and other aquatic plants. The ducks (who provided eggs and meat) ate plants and insects from the pond and their manure fertilized the plants which fed the tilapia (which was harvested twice a year). There was no mention of edible human plant foods, but certainly lotus or water chestnuts could be integrated as well. This is a good example of using a "waste" as resource.
Fava Flowers and Loquat Fruit
They're doing a great job and are certainly on the cutting edge of food production to help the world! We were inspired and ask that you'll share this post if you feel inspired too so that more people can hook up to the ideas! It's all about spreading the ideas!
Unique Plants @ ECHO
Immature Monstera Deliciosa Fruit
Unique Solanacea (Naranjilla) and Simple Bucket Drip Irrigation
Using Bamboo Stands For Building
Bamboo is of course an incredibly versatile and renewable resource. Being a grass, it grows rapidly and uniformly and its utility is outstanding and certain varieties provide food. ECHO helped educated and distribute numerous useful varieties globally.
Other Things @ ECHO
Drip Bucket Irrigation
This is a grassroots method of producing and harvesting methane (used in the same manner as propane). This example is made using a 55 gallon barrel and easy to find plumbing parts. The blue barrel is where the magic happens. In goes biomass (usually manure) and out comes methane. The anaerobic bacteria consume the material and release methane. The methane flows into the upside down white barrel floating ing water held by the red barrel. From there it is piped directly to a cook stove.
Hand Cranked Water Pump
A clay hut showing an accessible and easy method for shelter building.
Rice Intensification Study & Chicken Tractor
This was a comparison plot of rice production system.
Tippy Tap for Easy Hand Washing
Urban Garden & Carpet Wicking
BioChar, Bicycle Powered Rice Thresher, Cooking Technology
The mission to provide appropriate technology to those living close to the Earth is noble and glorious indeed.
Access to information, resources, tools and skills can change the quality of life for so many. ECHO is instrumental in sharing replicable methods for producing biochar (for carbon sequestration and soil improvement.), agricultural equipment that could be built on site by the producers themselves, and building efficient cook stoves to greatly reduce the need for fuel.
Pigs & Worm Composting
Methods for keeping and utilizing "biomass processing factories" such as worms and pigs with simple and effective were shown here. Methods for feeding pigs "waste" products and designs for infrastructures for vermicompost were demonstrated at ECHO. The effective use of "waste" products turns them into meat of high quality compost can make a big difference.
As you can see, they're doing so much at one site that is rippling out to touch many people.
One farmer gets the gist and thrives and then other people are attracted to learn too!
In this way, we think ECHO is truly having an impact on reducing world hunger! We were so thankful to visit this inspiring place as big visions help the rest of us to dream big!!
As mentioned earlier, it is our hope that even 10 people will be inspired by this post or learn a new idea that they want to research/implement in their own lives!! Each one teach one! Thanks for reading!
This post was written by a member of the #ecotrain. Check out the latest @ecotrain magazine to read more inspiring articles by the other passengers!