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Re: Care farming: an innovative approach for promoting women’s economic empowerment, decent rural employment and social inclusion. What works in developing countries?

Gina Seilern FAO, Italy
24.04.2014
FSN Forum

Dear Hajni,

I think this is a fascinating and very inspiring topic, and have enjoyed reading people’s contributions so far. In particular I think that George Kent from Hawaii raises a very important point about increasing people’s ability to empathize with and care about each other as a way of reducing hunger. This comes down to the relational nature of life and the all-important human factor.

With this in mind, have you  looked into any psychosocial approaches to development interventions and have you thought about this for managing and measuring future care farming programmes? There is some very interesting literature on this topic, and I wonder if there would be scope to link some of these concepts up with your work on care farming.

The “wellbeing approach” is one methodology, which could be interesting food for thought for this work: it places a special focus on subjective accounts of how people are doing and feeling, and uses these as a basis from which to measure the impact of development interventions. People’s “subjective”, or “inner” wellbeing links in directly with their sense of dignity and self-worth, as well as their capacity to relate to others in their families and communities. This in turn links in with people’s ability to care about each other, which as mentioned by Mr Kent, could be an effective way of reducing hunger..

The University of Bath has developed an interesting research project based on the wellbeing approach which it has piloted in India and Zambia –http://wellbeingpathways.org/. Of particular interest is their multidimensional model of wellbeing.

All the best,

Gina