School produce for local Spar

2016-09-08 06:00
Pieter Straus(right), owner of Root to Grow with teachers and learners at Lathi-Tha School of Skills. PHOTO: Mbongiseni MASEKO

Pieter Straus(right), owner of Root to Grow with teachers and learners at Lathi-Tha School of Skills. PHOTO: Mbongiseni MASEKO

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Lathi-Tha School of Skills has started a garden project which will see the school selling vegetables to a local supermarket in Khayelitsha.

The school has formed a working relationship with Root to Grow, a non-profit organisation which specialises in starting vegetable gardens in vacant spaces at schools.

The local SuperSpar has come on board and promised to buy vegetables from the school once they are harvested.

Thembela Hlela, the school principal, said half of the harvest will be used by the school for their nutrition programme.

“We will sell half of it to SuperSpar which will help the school to raise funds. We will also use the garden as part of our curriculum as some learners do agriculture.

We are very excited about the partnership formed between the school, Root to Grow and SuperSpar. Spar will support the project for a year and then we will continue with it on our own. We are planning to plant a variety of vegetables,” Hlela said.

Pieter Straus, the owner of Root to Grow, said there are 12 schools from disadvantaged areas which are part of the project in the province.

“This project is very important because it does not only feed learners, but it also educates them about agriculture so that they will be self-sustainable. They will also start gardens in their homes. It is impossible to teach a hungry child. Agriculture is the way to go. It creates jobs as well. South Africa is a nation of farmers. Spar is going to spend R100 000 on buying vegetables from the school,” Straus said.

Straus also wrote a book titled ‘My own vegetable patch” which is about agriculture.

The book is being translated by the school from English to Xhosa.

It is also going to be translated to Afrikaans and German languages.

Root to Grow was established eight years ago to encourage vegetable gardens for schools in disadvantaged schools.

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