With support from the “Green Gold” Project, herders in 10 soums of Khovd aimag have built Herder Training, Information and Service Centers (HTISC).

 “Our new center is very special to me. Before, when I worked with only my bag and my stamp in my hand, most people didn’t trust me. This was visible from their attitudes. Finally, after expending our labour,we were able to build a fantastic centre with a big conference hall for meetings, conferences and trainings, an office room, a small hotel and service rooms. This is an amazing feeling which cannot be describedin word alone.”

  • N.Batdorj, Head of the Association of Pasture-User Groups (APUG), Buyant soum, Khovd aimag.

On the morning of April 29, 2012, Batdorj woke up early, put on his formal clothes and went to work. Throughout the previous month, he had worn work clothes and spent all day, from sun up to sundown, hard at work on the construction of the new HTISC buildings in Khovd and Buyant soums. Today is the opening day of their new centre. Based on his reputation for being hard-working and responsible, the heads of APUGS in Khovd aimag selected him to lead the organisation of the construction work. As part of the training provided by a specialist from Ulaanbaatar, they were trained for one month in the technology and methods required for the construction of a sandwich building.     
 “I was selected with four young men; we worked as a team during this period. People are very interested in our centre’s construction and we even received some tenders. We now have an opportunity to operate our work team like a herder cooperative and create permanent workplaces for them. In Khovd aimag,construction materials are very expensive and construction costs for such a building are very high. However, we now know that sandwich constructions are cost-effective, tidy and have very good thermal insulation. This summer we will build 10 more HTISCs like ours. We have learned a new skill, and this is the most valuable thing for us.”

HTISCs are being set up in all 66 of Green Gold’s targeted soums in nine aimags. To begin, these centers will be furnished with basic training tools and materials. The centres will cooperate with other organisations to provide training and information services for herders.

The “Green Gold” Project facilitated the formation and strengthening of herders’ self-governing organisationsAPUGs, which will increasingly serve as a knowledge and information-sharing network among herders. There is an urgent need for HTISCs to have their own building in order to maintain operations and to reachout to herder families. In cooperation with local government organisations, the Project has been resolving this need in different manner. In soum centres, there are hardly any buildings and the old ones are of a poor quality and are expensive to renovate. Therefore, it is more efficient in terms of cost and quality to build new ones.

For this reason, Mrs. Narmandakh, a community development specialist with the “Green Gold” Project, initiated a small project entitled “Construction of sandwich buildings for HTISCs”. Professional assistance and plans were made according to the design and construction scheme, and all construction elements and other materials were brought from China. The project was launched in April. The advantages of sandwich buildings are as follows:

  • They are cost-effective
  • They are time-saving
  • They are resistant to damp and noise
  • They have good thermal insulation
  • They have a long life span
  • They are earthquake-proof

The Project’s only investment was in material costs, and local staff contributed their team work, resulting in a 40 percent saving in real expenses.

Because we didn’t have any herder organisations and centres in the past two decades, every day four to five people voluntarily came to help us and tried to do things as well as they could. Soum departments, companies, government officers, all soums’ APUGs and individuals contributed cash and other materials for the improvement of our new centre. Now we will keep our door open for everyone and become a real “palace” for herders to which everyone will come with pleasure.

A mass of people arrive at the new HTISC building at 10 AM for the launch of the opening ceremony.