Coordinating training for the disabled with the aim of welfare taking over agriculture

This is a concept that goes one step further than agricultural and welfare cooperation(NOUFUKURENKEI), namely, coordination to prevent farmers from going out of business.

 (Collaborative coordination with Workplace C for the disabled)

Our(Michiko TOYODA & Workplace C) goal is to help disabled people lead a independent life, and to train disabled people in food, agriculture, and rural areas to achive this purpose, as well as to take care of disabled people to achive this purpose.
This section describes the coordination of Training of Persons with Disabilities in Food, Agriculture and Rural Areas.
Incidentally, the term "NOUFUKURENKEI : Encouraging Farming with Disabled People" has come to be used frequently in recent years. Our goals partially include "NOUFUKURENKEI : Encouraging Farming with Disabled People".

 

I (Michiko TOYODA) am mainly in charge of theory explanation at Workplace C. At Workplace C, they start with a morning assembly. In the morning, they start with a morning meeting, do their morning work (with a break), eat their lunch, do their afternoon work (with a break), and end with an evening assembly.

This is a scene from a morning assembly. Under instruction, they bow and say "Good morning".
At the end of the day, they bow in the same way, saying, "Thank you for your hard work".
The important thing is to work following  instructions.

Their work includes the following (cherry blossoms, shiitake mushroom cultivated in natural log woods, weeding (services: weeding at facilities, etc. on behalf of the government; infrastructure development: management of roads, etc. through weeding, etc. on behalf of the government, etc.), ume (Japanese plum), sudachi (Japanese barley), sansho (Japanese leaf and fruit), miscellaneous work (mulch removal, etc.), etc.). Detail of their work are explained with images, videos (with or without sound (aerial photography)) and words below (some of them do not have images, etc.).

There is no chatter during the work. You can only have instructions by staff and replies such as "Yes, I understand."
These instructions and replies, which can be said to be the concept of a workplace C, can be seen in the video (the aerial photo does not have sound). If you are watching a non-aerial video, please pay attention to the audio (The volume is too loud or too soft).

Managing terraced rice paddies: Cherry blossoms

This is a new project that will start in 2021 where they cultivate and ship adible cherry leaves.

The image shows cherry saplings being planted in terraced rice paddies. Four bamboo stakes are inserted around each cherry  saplings so as not to accidentally cut the cherry tree when weeding with the brush cutter.

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Weeding the grass

They are engaged in two types of weeding.
One type is weeding commissioned by the government, called "service" (Ekimu). There are various scales of weeding, ranging from large to small areas.
The other type is called "infrastructure", which is for the mutual benefit of agriculture and rural areas or for the sustainability of agriculture and rural areas.
As of the end of 2020, there are six disabled people (users) at Workplace C who have been trained and certified to weed grass (with brush cutter). The longer they work in the field, the faster they weed.

Shiitake mushrooms caltivated in natulal log woods

They are engaged in many steps of shiitake mushroom cultivation process,  such as cutting out bed long, drilling the holes for planting fungi, laying the bed logs down to grow shiitake mushrooms, harvesting, and drying, entrusted by a farmer.

A rare type of JGAP certification is given to workplace C in which a disabled workplace is responsible for many of the processes.
GAP stands for Good, Agricultural, and Practice, with the J standing for Japan GAP, and there are other types of GAP such as GGAP (Global GAP).
Old kunugi trees are laid out horizontally on the flat surface of the mountain and are covered with cedar leaves to compost them and make hummus. In addition, we plant sawtooth kunugi saplings to ensure the long-term sustainability of the natural cycle where kunugi trees grow and return to ground.

Harvesting plum, sudachi, and sansho

Workplace C harvests plum, sudachi, and sansho for farmars who leaf and fruit planted those tree.
Plums are let grow on the tree until they are fully ripe, according to the policy of the farmers who grow them, and then scoop them up with a blue net after they fall naturally onto the ground

Sudachies are harvested in two stages process because sudachi trees have spines. The first step is to cut branches with fruit and spins by 10cm and the second step is to collect them and harvest the fruits.
Concerning sansho, its fruits are harvested, its leaves are removed, and the flutes are packed. Then, the flutes are via JA by sansho farmers.
Below are images and videos of plums, sudachi, and sansho, which show the harvest process.

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Miscellaneous Task (Other Task: Mulch Removal)

The following is an introduction to other task: mulch removal.
Removing mulch from the ground is very tiring for farmers. By having many people with disabilities (users) work at once, the task can be completed with speed and completeness which would be difficult for a small group of farmers.

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Child Development Support

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Workshop C also provides a service called Child Development Support. Child development support includes instruction in basic daily activities, imparting knowledge and skills, training for adaptation to group life, and other necessary support.
In other words, we want to provide children in need of support with one of the options for their future career.
This image shows the children harvesting shiitake mushrooms by themselves. The children seemed to be enjoying harvesting the shiitake mushrooms.

Fee Schedule

I (Michiko TOYODA) can share our concept (theory) of work with you for a fee. If you are convinced by the theory and agree with it, I will tell you how to do the work at Workshop C for free if you wish (please pay for transportation and travel expenses). We can come to you from Workshop C or you can come to Workshop C.

Encouraging Farming with Disabled People Coordinate (theory) 70,000 yen / 1 day
(Transportation and accommodation expenses will be charged separately)

How to do the work of Workshop C 0 yen / 1 day
(Transportation and accommodation expenses will be charged separately)