Latest Breaking News: EPCL Facilitates Self-Sustainability of Flood Affectees > As part of its long-term commitment towards flood victims, Engro Polymer & Chemicals Ltd (EPCL) continues to instill a new sense of hope among people whose lives were completely devastated last year by the most catastrophic flood disaster in the history of Pakistan.
EPCL recently initiated its agriculture rehabilitation program in the areas worst affected by the floods.
EPCL follows a clearly chalked out CSR strategy which focuses on Community Involvement in line with EPCL’s core business values in an effort to give back to the society.
After successfully carrying out its flood relief efforts, EPCL recently kicked off its agriculture rehabilitation activities in Northern areas that were worst affected by the flood’s aftermath.
EPCL has currently launched agriculture-based self-sufficiency projects in far-flung areas where the flood affectees suffer from low morale and inadequate economic opportunities at the moment.
The area of Upper Swat which is also considered the fruit and vegetable basket of Pakistan was completely destroyed in the wake of the floods leaving little or no means for the local farmers to earn a living.
Aiming to revive the cash flow of these farmers, EPCL distributed seeds of Turnip, Potato, Cabbage and Lady Finger among the local farmers to facilitate farming activities in 700 to 1,000 acres of fertile land covering areas like Bahrain, Chamgari, Minkial, Kalam, Utror, Matiltan, Garbral and others.
As local farmers reinitiate their farming activities, they will get the opportunity to earn monthly income of PKR 80,000 to 100,000 per canal helping them achieve economic stability. EPCL also recently installed 500 high-efficiency micro drip irrigation systems in Northern areas to support the nutritional needs of low income groups.
These micro drip irrigation systems made of high-quality PVC pipes use advanced technology to water plant at the roots. Through this system, the amount of water delivered can be tightly controlled to keep the soil at the ideal level of moisture, necessary to maximize growth of the plants.
As the crop is planted at specific locations next to the emitters, urea, fertilizers and pesticides need also only be applied directly to the root area of the crop, ensuring major input cost savings of about 50-75%. Other input costs are also reduced by 30-60%, while potentially increasing product yield by 10-50%. EPCL aims to provide these drip irrigation systems to 2,000 deserving families.
Commenting on EPCLs on-going Agriculture Rehabilitation efforts, Sarah Aziz, CSR and Corporate Communications Officer said, “Our long-term goal is to help flood affectees regain their lost self-esteem and start their life with a new zeal.
We faced multiple challenges in accessing far-flung areas in and around Swat Valley but we are really happy with the progress, the best part being the positive change we can see in people’s lives. At the moment, we continue to offer support for agriculture in Northern areas by using advanced agriculture system to enable self-sufficiency and maximize crop yield.
At the same time, we are in constant coordination with Pakistan Army to support them in improving the lives of flood victims in any other way we can.”
Earlier in 2010, EPCL conducted relief efforts in difficult to access areas hit by the flood where free Iron Replacement Therapy was provided to expectant women in dire need.
Drinking water and slush water was purified using Sodium Hypo Chlorite, a water disinfectant used by EPCL for the first time in Pakistan.
EPCL also worked on rain harvesting in the past whereby geo-membrane line reservoirs were used to retain rain water and utilize it for farming.
It is a great technology developed with water conservation in mind and EPCL plans to utilize this technology in Northern areas in near future to maximize agriculture production.