COVID-19 REFARMERS RESPONSE PROGRAM

------ April 27th, 2020 ------

GRANDMOTHERS KITCHEN GARDEN PROJECT

 

According to the UN’s World Food Programme, hunger is coming in full force to East Africa due to Covid-19.

 

Due to the pandemic and impending repercussions many people are dealing with extreme hunger and food shortages.

 

The grandmothers are the caregivers for many children orphaned by HIV/AIDS. The children are not going to school due to Covid-19 closures and the pressure on grandmothers to feed large families is serious.

 

Our project manager Patrick Paul Kidega decided to donate his time and resources and in his words, “We have decided to do something, a new calling, aspire to inspire with permaculture. We have selected 15 elderly women age 70 and above to go design for them a 10m by 3m kitchen garden and plant assorted vegetables, 6 different types with onion, egg plants, tomatoes so that in two weeks they have there some vegetables ready.” Yes they can have a full crop of cowpeas in that short period!

 

Patrick has amassed 59 commitments from young people who are eager to help dig and learn important permaculture skills and give back to their community. In return, they will be able to go home with simple techniques that will give them the ability to grow food for themselves. The project will also provide breakfast and lunch.

 

The curfews, travel restrictions, business closures and gathering bans are deeply affecting Ugandans. Patrick is initiating a program, “that would do something amazing during this lockdown. I know many shall get inspired by our permaculture kitchen gardens and be creative and be positive about this pandemic. Hunger is coming in full force.”

 

Your generous contribution will immensely help the Grandmothers Kitchen Garden Project. 

 

PLEASE DONATE BELOW

May 28th, 2020 - PROJECT UPDATE

Our Covid-19 Grandmothers Kitchen Garden Project is now complete! We have just finished Phase 1 in only 3 weeks!

 

Mama Josephine Ataro struggles to walk and look how well her garden is doing! Her garden was implemented only about 10 days ago. Food will be on the table from this garden for her and the 9 dependants in the family in less than 2 weeks!

 

Now that we have finished with the pilot phase and we see that this is a successful working model for providing an easy solution to food and nutrition security for vulnerable populations, WE ARE ASKING FOR YOUR HELP.

 

We really want to make our dream of installing 15 more gardens a reality and at the same time provide employment for our youth interns during the pandemic.

 

We learned a lot from the first 15 gardens. 

 

We found that the grandmothers have from 6 - 12 dependants each and we have developed a scrupulous procedure to choose our beneficiaries. The waitlist keeps getting longer and longer!

 

We have documented that the lives of close to 150 people have been positively impacted with permaculture skills and empowerment to see themselves through food shortages caused by Covid-19 and a cycle of poverty through phase 1 of our kitchen garden project.

 

We had a shortage of tools so our brilliant Project Manager Patrick Paul Kidega started a tool library in the community, with a room kindly donated by the village leaders/elders.

 

We saw that some seeds didn’t germinate because the families didn’t water adequately at the beginning so we included watering cans with each garden (seeds have been replanted).

 

We had the luck of attracting our wonderful volunteer interns. This is so commendable considering these are by no means well-off young people and they struggle to even get food on the table for themselves. We have now hired them on as paid staff for the next series of gardens! 

 

All this to say that we have recalculated the cost of each garden so that it reflects the amount of time and love that is being put into these projects in the small community of Kitgum in Northern Uganda.

 

One garden can now be implemented for as little as $80. With the new added costs which reflect living wages for the members, filling up the new tool library with tools, all seed, compost and supplies required for a garden including a watering can, we hope to raise the funds for 15 more 10m x 3m kitchen gardens!

 

We totally understand that times are financially difficult for some right now so you can also help by sharing this post and being an ambassador for our cause!

 

We thank you so much for supporting us by liking our posts, commenting on our work, sending us emails. All these acts encourage us to continue our life-changing work!

 

The entire REFARMERS team in Canada, Uganda and the grandmothers and children in Kitgum warmly thank you.

 

Apwoyo Matek! (Thank you in Acholi, the local dialect of Kitgum, Uganda)

The very small amount of $80 CAD is what we need per garden. We wish to implement 15 gardens which will impact the lives of over 150 people. If you or somebody you know would like to sponsor a garden please fill out our donation form below. Thank you so much!

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