Field work experience-

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My field trip began three weeks ago. I traveled to Barisal by plane, only 20 mins in the air, where I met my research team, Unus, Harun, Juneyna. Emdad, lead researcher, had traveled with me that morning from Dhaka. After long discussions around my planned methodology, field work began. Over my three weeks I met with over 160 farmers across 8 villages. Both men and women whom work hard day in and day out to ensure the best outcomes for their family. Households are adapting there way of living against the negative impacts of climate change with both men and women facing different challenges but sharing the same objective of keeping food on the table and their children in school.

After the first couple of FGD I came to terms with the fact that I was going to sweat buckets no matter what and began to relax into the environment I found myself in. I began to enjoy my time in the villages. Always feeling colourless with my pasty white Irish skin and plain western clothes but never feeling unwelcome. Each village I visited I was fed like a queen with fresh fruit from the trees despite it being Ramadan. Each group gave their time to me and put energy and effort into answering my questions despite their busy day to day lives. They welcomed the opportunity to sit, discuss and be heard and I welcomed their willingness to participate with open arms.

As my field work came to an end I had with me great memories, feelings of gratitude for my research team and the many farmers I met, mountains of notes and a clear message from the women of the villages that I needed to find a husband fast before it was too late for me. Now to analyse my data and hope it will contribute, however small, to protecting the livelihoods of those most vulnerable to climate change.


About judith-ann-colgan

Jodie Colgan is a graduate from University College Cork where she completed her Bachelor of Science in International Development and Food Policy. She is currently studying a Masters of Science in Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (MSc CCAFS) in National University Ireland Galway (NUI Galway). Jodie has previous work experience as a development assistant working in the West Bank in a human rights NGO, the Joint Advocacy Initiative (JAI). During her time in the West Bank Jodie involved herself in some sideline research in the Palestinian Museum of Natural history which included learning about aquaponics systems and how valuable the technology is in achieving sustainable food security across the globe. Currently Jodie is carrying out her Masters research thesis in Penang Malaysia with WorldFish, an international nonprofit research organisation. WorldFish is a member of CGIAR and has a primary goal of reducing poverty and hunger through fisheries and aquaculture. She will be carrying out a gender analysis on Climate Smart Aquaculture practices being implemented in rural areas in Bangladesh.