Sustainable Livelihood Through 1Azam
1 AZAM initiatives have impacted the lives of many low-income families, especially those in less-developed areas. For example, 31-year-old (as of 2015) Chik Azmily Che Abdul Aziz, who hails from Kampung Beoh Gunong in Kelantan, was earning RM500 a month as a daily labourer hired to look after the home gardens of others, as well as harvest oil palm fruits.
Through the 1AZAM Tani initiative as implemented by the Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI), which Che Azmily participated in from 2013, he was provided agricultural equipment and inputs (seeds, fertiliser and herbicides/ insecticides). Meanwhile, his wife was provided sewing machines to help her with her tailoring work. This enabled him to plant short-term seasonal cash crops such as cucumbers, tubers, leafy vegetables and watermelons, which he then sells to wholesalers. Meanwhile, his wife has been awarded a contract to tailor batik shirts from the owner of a batik factory.
Che Azmily had managed to increase his monthly income by an astounding 1,000 percent (or 10 times) to RM5,000, solidly boosting his family out of hardcore poverty.
1AZAM Tani has allowed him to start constructing a house using materials he bought with the proceeds from his farming, as well as start farming kelulut/stingless bees for their honey. He intends to expand his agricultural activities by renting abandoned/ unused plots of land. He also plans to sell the produce on his own in nearby farmers’ markets, rather than go through the wholesalers. 1AZAM Tani has also benefitted Tiu Hock Tong of Kg. Pasir Parit, also in Kelantan, who joined the initiative in 2012. The 64-year-old Tiu was similarly assisted with agricultural equipment and inputs, which he put to full use on a 1-acre piece of land. In addition, Tiu has gone into kelulut farming as well. This has enabled him to double his monthly income from RM500 to RM1,000, despite the fact that the crops are not harvested round-the-year.
LIH NKRA initiatives, particularly the 1AZAM programmes, are especially appreciated in East Malaysia, where they are run by the autonomous state Governments of Sabah and Sarawak. The proportion of low-income households is higher in various groups there, and they benefit more from these initiatives.
One such beneficiary is Sidi Tuba from Sungai Liuk, Mukah in Sarawak. Prior to 2010, when he joined the 1AZAM Tani channel, Sidi’s total household income was RM450. Under the Department of Agriculture Sarawak (Jabatan Pertanian Sarawak), Sidi started planting corn and other vegetables on his 3.6-hectare plot of land. The harvest is then sold at the Mukah market and all around the village. His income has increased by a staggering twenty-fold to over RM9,000 a month, well over the median income for all Malaysians, an achievement that he and his family can smile proudly about.
The Department has also assisted Tim Kawen of Kampung Rejoi in Siburan, Sarawak. Tim has been a participant in the 1AZAM Niaga channel since 2014, before which, he was using his house as an ad hoc sundry shop. Following his participation, he was able to obtain a proper business licence and expand his retail space. This has in turn enabled him to rearrange his products in a more ordered fashion. He has since more than quadrupled his income from RM600 to RM2,800 a month. He has also been able to Tim has been a participant in the 1AZAM Niaga channel since 2014, before which, he was using his house as an ad hoc sundry shop. Following his participation, he was able to obtain a proper business licence and expand his retail space. This has in turn enabled him to rearrange his products in a more ordered fashion. provide his family a more comfortable home, and with his sundry shop operations, his fellow villagers are able to purchase their daily supplies without going down to town.
Source: National Transformation Programme Annual Report 2015