Timely water availability and the use of traditional, less efficient irrigation methods are among the main constraints affecting the productivity of small-scale farming in many developing countries. Climate change, population growth, lack of skills and resources and less community resilience to respond are negatively affecting food security in many lower-income countries. Therefore, the use of small-scale efficient irrigation methods can be instrumental in improving local productivity and community resilience to climate change. Addressing these issues, this study is focused on developing a low-cost micro-irrigation technology and improving the skills of small landholder farming communities on the effective use of this system in the marginal lands of Indonesia. A series of capacity development activities were conducted during the project period, including focused group discussion (FGD), soil and water sampling, and design and construction of low-cost micro-irrigation systems. Moreover, following the principle of seeing is believing and learning by doing, a demonstration plot on the use of high-efficiency micro-irrigation was also established for on-hand training and troubleshooting. The result revealed a tremendous improvement in local awareness and adoption of the micro-irrigation system by the local community. Hence the capacity building strategy adopted emerged successful in achieving improved local awareness and adoption and thus can be recommended for future programs in other areas of developing countries.