The Panguipulli Public Library No.296

Impact Assessment Results

Library links farmers to valued support and services

PLIP grantee: The Panguipulli Public Library No.296

Impact study results, May 2011:
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Panguipulli Public Library has earned its place as an important player in agricultural development.

With EIFL-PLIP support, the library equipped a mobile laboratory with information and communication technology (ICT) and travelled to the peaks and valleys of the Andes mountains to reach remote farming communities.

The library trained 201 farmers, mostly women, in online research and social networking skills. They also connected farmers to an online market, increased the library’s stocks of books and journals on agriculture, and hosted lectures on farming methods.

Mrs Luengo Silvia VasquezThe new service fills an important need. Panguipulli is known for its beautiful scenery and lakes. But roads to the rural areas in the mountains are poor and the climate is harsh, especially in winter. As a result, farming communities have lived in isolation for many decades, with limited access to information about modern farming methods.

The library, working with partner agencies, also reached the farmers through local radio. Fifteen programmes on different farming topics were broadcast on a community radio station. In addition, the new service is testing the effectiveness of using mobile phones to reach farmers with news and information.

Mrs Luengo Silvia Vasquez, who farms with flowers and berries, was one of the library’s many trainees. ‘Since learning about the project, I have become a member of the library. I am a very shy person.... Through the course, I met very nice people, willing to share their experiences, and today I can say, I've taken a step forward to defeat my shyness, and I feel a little more integrated into the information society. Shyness cannot defeat me!’ she said.

Future support for the project will come from the Municipality of Panguipulli, local government agriculture support agencies and non-governmental organizations. Panguipulli Public Library has built a strong platform to serve farmers.

Previous project updates:

Tuning in to farmers' information needs

"Internet is no longer a world so unkonown to me"

Project background

The Panguipulli Public Library has had difficulty extending its information services to the farmers in the outlying, rural areas because of the harsh climate and the challenging terrain. This project explores the use of various kinds of technology to address the challenge of reach.  Through training farmers in the use of communication technology and through facilitating information exchange, the library helps to connect farmers with much-needed sources of government and NGO support and expertise.

The need
The Panguipulli Public Library serves a community of 33,307 in the Valdivia Province of southern Chile, mostly in the Andean Mountains. The project uses ICT to reach farmers in remote areas. Research has found that these farmers need information on topics such as support programs and grants, water law bonds, technical innovation for productions, market demands and requirements, training in digital technologies, climate information, techniques to improve productivity, as well as the most recent literature on agriculture, forestry and livestock.

The Panguipulli Public Library will provide training and information. Working with government officials and experts from agricultural NGOs, the library transports trainers and equipment to remote areas in a mobile laboratory and library. The mobile laboratory includes computers, modems, digital cameras, voice recorders and I-Pods.

The project proposal was developed with Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and the local development program PRODESAL, which supports agricultural production of farmers and is funded by the National Institute of Agricultural Development (INDAP) in Chile. The library have also partnered  with the Municipality of Panguipulli, who helped design the project.

If you want to know more about this project, contact:

Olga Nass de la Jara
Public Library 296: Panguipulli
Ancharan Arce 292. Población Bernardo Ohiggins