Saffron Success: Mohammad Rafiq’s Triumph over Adversity

Mohammad Rafiq, a 53-year-old farmer in Taghan Ariq village of Dawlat Abad District, Balkh Province, is married and lives with five family members. Despite the challenges of farming life, Mohammad Rafiq finds solace in the rich soil beneath his calloused hands. However, as climate change brings erratic weather patterns, threatening his crops, Mohammad Rafiq adapts his farming practices with determination and innovation. Through his resilience, he not only safeguards his family’s future but also instills values of hard work and stewardship in his children, standing as a beacon of hope amidst the uncertainties of rural life in Balkh Province.

As Mohammad Rafiq reflects on his journey, the changes brought about by joining the program are palpable. His income, once solely reliant on crop cultivation, has diversified with the addition of saffron farming, enhancing his family’s economic stability. With three young children under his care, Mohammad Rafiq’s aspirations for their future education and well-being are tempered by the current reality of their tender ages. Nevertheless, he takes solace in their good health and envisions a future where they will thrive.

“My family’s situation has improved relatively after joining the program. My income comes from cultivating crops, and saffron cultivation has also been added as a new crop to our previous crops, and its yield has also been added to the yields of previous crops.” He says.

Farming remains Mohammad Rafiq’s primary livelihood, but he harbors dreams of expanding his endeavors to increase his family’s income. With a keen eye toward sustainability, he contemplates finding crops resilient to water scarcity, akin to saffron, to bolster his agricultural pursuits. The newfound knowledge gained from the program instills in him a sense of empowerment and a commitment to continual learning and growth.

“Last year, the net income from 64 grams of saffron (amounting to 3900 Afghanis) was relatively low because it was the first year, and we used the money earned for various family expenses. This year, I harvested 141 grams and sold for 10,710 Afghanis, covering all of my family’s daily expenses.” he says.

As Mohammad Rafiq delves deeper into saffron cultivation, he finds joy in the harvest and processing of the delicate flowers, relishing the tangible rewards of his labor. The expansion of his business is evident in the increased yields and improved financial returns, providing a more stable foundation for his family’s daily expenses.

Looking ahead, Mohammad Rafiq remains steadfast in his ambitions for the future. He envisions a life of prosperity, tranquility, and positive contribution to society, fueled by the lessons learned and the opportunities afforded by the program. Through perseverance and dedication, he is determined to carve a path toward a brighter tomorrow for himself and his loved ones. He added; “In the future, let’s strive to be prosperous, live calmly and peacefully, and have a positive impact on the progress of society.”

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