Greening of bare land and income generation for the selected community members in Manalkadu and the coastal area of Delft East  of Jaffna District

Onion harvest drying

Onion harvest drying, Delft Island © Kumudini EKARATNE


1. Greenery of bare Land through inter-cultivation of coconut and home gardening in Delft East by 30 families

2. Increase the families income by 60%

3. Introduction of income generation options for the 76 selected families of the coastal area in Manalkadu


Fisheries and cultivation are the main livelihood for Delft island population. Fishing is in progress but living inland is somewhat difficult due to lack of steady income for the local communities. The soil is sandy in some part and with clay texture in other parts. The sandy soil is suitable for coconut cultivation and the selected families are in the sandy area with water irrigation facilities. They also have the home gardening option to get initial income for the project.

In Maruthankerney, fishing is the only livelihood for those living in the neighborhood of the sand dunes and forest. Since a dry fish technology project is in progress, some people are left with the only option of vending. All were displaced many times, lost their belongings and are now resettled. Manalkadu was severely ravaged by the Tsunami in 2004 and the families relocated in new homes. The community has just begun to restructure their lives after the end of three decades of armed conflict.

In the east of the Delft village at the GN J/6 and in the Maruthankerney Division at GN 418 and 419 Division bare lands are available widely: some of the area are sandy, while the other part is clay in nature. Since there is not much vegetation in that area, the soil is drying under the burning sun. a vegetation introduction would contribute to the ecosystem conservation for the local communities. The main identified issues in that area are:
1. Continuous cultivation of home gardening will be only limited to rainy season.
2. In the dry season high temperature prevents the natural vegetation growth.
3. Water is available but is limited in quantity for cultivation for multi season approach
4. Coconut trees thrive well and provide steady income as the texture of the soil is appropriate for coconuts.

The thirty selected families don’t have any income and will engage in the coconut cultivation and home gardening as an inter-cultivation strategy to create an income. The coconut trees will be watered and the surroundings will be kept wet with the home garden option. The income from the home garden will assist them to take care of the coconut cultivation as well as to meet the family expenses. When the coconut trees will bear nuts, the income for the family will be increased; and it will help improving the standard of living, as well as the conservation of the coastal ecosystem. This project aims to provide income for the households of the 30 families and to conserve the nature by greenery.

While in the Manalkadu, the Casuarina forest is protected and maintained by the community of the two GN Divisions – J/ 418 and J/ 419 of Vadamarachchi East Division through the previous project MFF 116 activities. The people who supported the cutting of trees and mining of sand in transportation of same belongs to the two GN divisions J/ 418 and J/419 are presently withdrawn their support and engaging in the maintenance of the casuarinas forest sand dunes. The three main identified issues in this context are:

1. The family earning from the transport-support for tree cutting and sand mining falls to zero.
2. People displaced from the adjacent village of Nagar Kovil are still in the J/419 Division without any resources to develop income for their households.
3. Community of the J/418 are all fishing folks inluding 30 Widow Families and 20 female headed families. Those 30 widow families are unable to do fishing and can hardly maintain household income.

Some of the families are doing labor work, small business or others small scale farming. The protection of the casuarinas forest sand dune will be weakened if no income generations alternatives are provided to the families, besides the tree cutting and sand mining transport.

The project aims to provide alternate livelihood options to increase incomes for the selected families: crop cultivation for 28 families, poultry farming for 20 families, fish vending for 23 families and entrepreneur skills development for 5 families.

Target beneficiaries

  • 30 families in the J/6 GN situated in the Delft centre
  • 76 families in the Maruthankerney Division


Delft East:
30 families cultivated 600 coconut plants


  • Onion cultivation by 28 families
  • Fish vending by 23 families and food preparation by 5 families
  • Poultry farming by 20 families

Accomplishments and challenges

Delft East:
- 30 homesteads planted a total of 600 coconut seedlings: completed with
some mortality
- 30 homesteads intercropped with fruits and vegetables: completed with
some mortality; no vegetables planted

- There have been delays in the project due to the delay of the seedlings distribution

- Onion cultivation by 28 families: income increased by 65%
- Fish vending by 23 families and food preparation by 5 families: fish vendors income increased by 100%; food producers income increased by 200%
- Poultry farming practiced by 20 families and their income increased by 6-48%

- Harsh conditions have adversely affected the livestock component

- High poultry food costs

Contributions to cross-cutting themes

Climate Change:
The perennial plants, when fully grown will provide shade to the ground which is likely to reduce surface

Gender integration:
Both men and women benefited from the project.

Lessons Learned


A close dialogue with the relevant state officials should have been maintained in the course of the project.

Project Facts



Manalkadu and the coastal area of Delft East of Jaffna District



1st Feb 2016 to 31st Jan 2017

Co-financing Partner

USD 419

Implementing Partner

Mr. Sundaram Divakalala
Chief Executive Officer
51, Wyman Road, Nallur, Jaffna.
TP: 0094-021-221-7092

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