Back Print
iNGO Project

SNV Netherlands Development Organisation (SNV)

Lao Upland Rural Advisory Service (LURAS)

Last updated:

Lao PDR is a nation of smallholder farmers, with over 75% of the workforce employed in the agriculture sector.  The ongoing transformation of the rural economy has brought these smallholders into contact with a much wider range of service providers.  In light of this trend, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has recognised that the role of government extension workers must change, and that greater pluralism in service provision is needed.

However, the development of future rural advisory services in Lao PDR faces a number of challenges, including a lack of government funding, inadequate human resources, the outflow of young people from rural areas, the exclusion of vulnerable groups (such as women and ethnic minority groups), weak market regulation, and expansion of crops and technologies that have negative impacts on the environment. 

Thus, the SNV in Lao PDR has started the Lao Upland Rural Advisory Service (LURAS) project in partnership with Helvetas, and the Department of Agriculture Extension and Cooperatives, in order to aid in the formation of an effective pluralistic extension service delivery system to respond to farmers’ needs for improving food security and effectively engaging in growing markets.

The project aims to benefit smallholder upland farmers, both men and women, and secondary farmer organisations, who will provide a means by which members may overcome some of their disadvantages.  The project aims to support farmer organisations as a means for improving collective action and the bargaining power of smallholders.  Secondary beneficiaries of the project are government organisations, private sectors, and civil society organisations who provide services to smallholder farmers.

Project interventions include supporting proposals from state and non-state actors who will deliver services to small upland farmers, including a small grant mechanism.  The project also includes capacity building activities, including training and piloting of new approaches to improve performance in service delivery.

 The goals of this three-year project are fourfold.  Firstly, the aim is for small farmers to have better agricultural productivity and income through advisory services that meet their requirements and choice, with the objective of at least 5000 households receiving services based on demands in at least 4 districts by project close.  Additionally, LURAS aims for independent farmers’ organisations to provide demand-oriented services to facilitate transparent and fair market engagement of their members.  Another target is for demand driven and gender inclusive advisory services to be delivered by state and private actors.  Finally, LURAS hopes to promote good practices, creating a policy framework that is more conducive for integration of smallholder farmers into value chains. 

Project Start Date Project End Date Current Project Phase Current Phase Start Current Phase End Project Operational Budget
Dec 1st 2014 Dec 31st 2017 5090000

Project Coordinator Project Partners
Frank Tolentino
+856 20 5620 8511
There are no partners specified

Provinces and districts of project activity:

Provinces Districts
Oudomxay Province - Beng - La - Nga
Xiengkhouang Province - Kham - Morkmay - Nonghed

Sectors and sub-sectors of project activity:

Sectors Sub-sectors
Agriculture, Forestry & Fisheries - Agricultural Training - Food Crop Production - Governance Aid in AFF Development - Upland Farming Systems
Human Resources Development - Capacity Building
Income Generation & Economic Development

Back Print