Oferr, an NGO at Natham village in Kanchipuram district, Tamil Nadu, working for the cause of Sri Lankan refugees, is conducting a five day training programme in spirulina production and processing from January 25th.

Spirulina is a blue - green algae known for its nutritional properties and has the ability to grow in both the ocean and inland waters.

Regarded as a nutritional food it is now being consumed in more than 75 countries around the world.

Oferr, began its Spirulina project with the intention of supplementing the nutritional intake of the refugees across Tamil Nadu.

Poor health

“Living in difficult conditions, many refugees experience poor nutritional health, and we saw the potential for Spirulina to benefit thousands of vulnerable people,” said Mr. K. Retnarajasingam, Program co-ordinator of the project.

“In addition to its nutritional programme, Oferr began to incorporate spirulina in its income generation work.

Low cost

“As cultivation is low-cost and relatively simple, it is a potential source of income for the refugee community, both now and upon their return to Sri Lanka,” he said.

Oferr not only distributes Spirulina to the camps, but also trains volunteers in cultivation methods.

SHG production

Women’s self-help groups have begun spirulina production as part of their efforts to achieve economic independence.

About 35 camps currently have small spirulina tanks. The product is not only distributed and sold within the refugee camps, but also to local people.

“The nutritional and economic benefits of spirulina have now spread across the state and beyond. About 265 people have received training from us and 15 new cultivation centres have been established," explained Mr. Retnarajasingam.

History, benefits, tank construction, laboratory cultivation, outdoor cultivation, climatic conditions management, harvesting, drying , preparation of different products. are all part of the training schedule..

For more details readers can contact Mr.K.Retnarajasingam, phone: 044-227435184, mobile: 9884000413, email: oferrindia@gmail.com, no: 2/246, Nehru street, Pulichathamman kovil road, Mudura natham village, Thazamboor, Navaloor post, Kancheepuram District: 603103, Tamil Nadu.