The project expects to work with 15,000 farmers
across 100 communities within 3 years. Each year, communities
in five different regions of Bangladesh will be trained with
basic knowledge about rats and how to use appropriate tools
and strategies to sustainably and cost-effectively manage their
rat pest problems.
There are several steps in this process, which
start by first showing farmers and communities what life can
be like in the absence of rodents through first-hand observation
and experience when rodent populations are successfully controlled.
The farming communities then need to decide
whether their investments (time & labour) into the ecologically-based
rodent management strategy are worthwhile. Are their lives better
now? How much better? The project partners will help the communities
make these assessments.
Important assesments to be made by the project
will be whether communities can maintain the rat management
strategy without external assistance and do communities sufficiently
understand the management concepts involved to make the strategy
adaptable to changing circumstances.
Finally, communities must decide to “buy
in” to the rat management strategy. Will communities purchase
traps and continue? We expect the answer will be yes in most
situations, but understaning why a community might say "no"
to rat management will be important for scaling up the project
Ultimately, we expect that ecologically-based
rat management strategies can be institutionalised within sustainable
frameworks. For example, NGOs could operate revolving fund schemes
to reach more communities at minimal cost. Charitable donors
may find the programme attractive by funding extensions to the
programme to reach more communities, allowing more poor people
to be empowered to live without the severe rat problems they
face every day.
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