Beyond Immediate Rewards: Begumisa Pakarasio’s Vision for Sustainable Community Development
Begumisa Pakarasio (46) is a devout Catholic, fruit farmer and keeps a flock of about twenty-five chickens. Surprisingly, he says, the role of change agent has had a notable impact even in his farming business.
“This role has transformed my ability to communicate effectively, convey right and timely information, and especially understand better the needs of people around me,” says Begumisa
Being a farmer as well has helped him identify better with the needs of fellow villagers, most of whom are farmers like him
He believes his appointment as a Change Agent is because of his reputation as a trustworthy and fair person widely known in the village. This character was established when an NGO visited his village with agricultural items supposed to be distributed among villagers.
“I was assigned to distribute those items. I made sure I distributed them fairly, giving the right number of items to every villager deserving the offer” says Begumisa
Begumisa helps his community in addressing critical issues such as frequent landslides and inadequate water sources. Not too long ago, the community faced devastating landslides resulting in loss of life and property. Through his role, the community has taken proactive measures by creating trenches to redirect water flow and prevent further landslides.
Although he has faced challenges such as community members expecting refreshments after public meetings, Begumisa remains committed to his role. He has, for instance, been successfully mobilizing fellow community members in working to establish a protected water source.
Begumisa’s key goal for his community has been to help them focus on the greater benefits, like sustainable sources of safe water and prevention of landslides as opposed to immediate material rewards such as Bushera.
Note; Bushera is a local millet porridge which turns into alcohol when fermented.