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Finance for Rainwater (FERN): Building a Public-Private Partnership to Support Economic Growth and Food Security in Nepal

Two Nepalese banks, Nirdhan Utthan Development Bank Ltd and Agricultural Development Bank Ltd, and two Nepalese NGOs, HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation Nepal and Lumanti, are developing a multi-year program on microfinance and rainwater harvesting. RAIN and Aidenvironment initiated this program and are working to set up a strong partnership between public and private sector parties in Nepal.

The partnership believes that setting up a self-sustaining system for microfinance and rainwater harvesting will bring about food security at farm level and create an enabling environment between different sectors. From 2010 to 2013 various pilot projects were held in different areas of Nepal in which a small component of the hardware costs of rainwater harvesting systems were covered by a loan. The positive outcomes of these pilot projects justified a further study into income generating activities and a scenario analysis of financial products prior to the launch of the FERN Nepal program. Two fruitful workshops have already taken place in Kathmandu. On May 16 Frederik Claasen (Aidenvironment) facilitated the third workshop, which focused on the details of the business plan, the governance structure and the innovative components of the program.

The program will link demand for water for agricultural production and food security with the establishment and strengthening of local businesses. By helping local service providers to create a business for rainwater harvesting and microfinance it will ensure that farmers have access to technical and financial expertise.

If you are interested in our program and would like to receive more information, please send us an email or contact us by phone. You can follow us on Twitter soon: @FERN.

For more information contact Basja Jantowski.