Food gardens to build sustainable communities

2019-03-14 06:00
= Ready to build sustainable communities one garden at a time are Nandipha Pupuma (MTO Group: Stakeholder Relations), Blueliliesbush Primary School learner Rujade Jordaan and Blueliliesbush Primary School Vice-Principal Lulama Magadaza.              Photo:SUPPLIED

= Ready to build sustainable communities one garden at a time are Nandipha Pupuma (MTO Group: Stakeholder Relations), Blueliliesbush Primary School learner Rujade Jordaan and Blueliliesbush Primary School Vice-Principal Lulama Magadaza. Photo:SUPPLIED

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IN a bid to fight poverty and malnutrition in the Tsitsikamma region, several food gardens are set to rise from the ground - building sustainable communities.

This food security initiative - the brainchild of the MTO Group, in conjunction with Working on Fire (Wof) and Tsitsikamma community members - saw the first soil prepared for planting seeds at Blueliliesbush Primary School, Koomansbos Community, Coldstream Junior Secondary School and Coldstream Crèche on March 4 and 5.

MTO Group Stakeholder Relations Manager Nandipah Pupuma says, “We believe in engaging proactively with the communities where we work.

“Tsitsikamma is an area that has a lot of potential, but lacks resources and faces a lot of challenges from a poverty perspective.

“We started this food security initiative with the aim of helping to develop Tsitsikamma into a sustainable community - food secure, healthy environment and strong economy.”

According to Koomansbos-resident Linton Cunningham, the food project will enable them to grow their own vegetables, as well as to sell the access vegetables they produce to the community.”

Coldstream Junior Secondary School Principal Rudi Jonker says, “The food garden will assist with the feeding scheme we have at the school.

“Additionally, I look at the food garden as a teaching and learning tool. The food garden helps to illustrate that when we put effort into doing something, we get something back.

“I want our children to realise that they have the power to make a difference.”

At Blueliliebush Primary School, the project will assist learners to master the skill of growing vegetables.

The WoF team will maintain the gardens at the two schools and crèche, while the MTO operations team will assist in the securing of mesh and covering for certain areas to deter baboons.

“We would like to thank all who are involved in this project,” says Pupuma.

“Taking small steps together can go a long way to realising a sustainable and prosperous Tsitsikamma. Going forward, we as the MTO Group hope to roll out more projects like these in the areas we work in.”

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