Small contributions also help us
Orphanages in impoverished areas in Africa feed the children mainly with mealie meal which is all they can afford, as a staple it meets the basic need of filling a tummy but as for nutrition it doesn't meet the minimum requirement that children need for healthy bodies and minds.
Your contribution will go towards suppling twice a week fresh vegetables to an orphanage. The vegetables will be made up of an an assortment of some of the selection in an appropriate ratio of the following produce; spinach, kale, carrots, onions, beans, beetroot, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, pumpkin, gem squash, sweet potato, mealies, cabbage, etc. as well as a few herbs with suggestions of veggie paring and serving suggestion for the cooks.
What is it about?
Our farm has two aims - to produce food naturally for orphaned children while creating jobs by teaching ecological farming skills to the unemployed. We are supported by our local community who buy our veggies, which helps us to cover the cost of the farm in order to feed the children and run our training programmes.
We urgently need bridging finance to save the farm while we wait for the produce to reach the harvest stage. Our funds have run a bit short of our goal due to unforeseen changes in our startup donor funding, who now is focusing on assisting another 900 children in need. We are able to reach our goal of providing our community with organic vegetables, and our mission of feeding 1014 orphans every month with at least 150g of fresh vegetables each, everyday while developing urban farmers to feed our nation in a healthy way.
The land was purchased in 2013 in the middle of suburbia by our founding donor. The following year, extensive assessments were carried out to apply permaculture and biodynamic principles to improve the soil quality intensively, and grow a natural farm from the early stages. The start of Growing Healthy Farms NPC as a not-for-profit farm was thus put in motion.
The farm was designed in a ecohydrological way in order to harness the run off water, by slowing it down and spreading it over the property. By shaping the ground into berms and swales, the design has ensured that all rain soaks into the ground, and the runoff from neighbors and the road is captured to hydrate the water table and aquifers.
Intensive permaculture plots with drip irrigation to conserve water were developed. Compost production from the neighbours stable waste began, alongside the wormeries and bokashi food waste recycling to make fertiliser to feed the crops. Herbs were planted along the tops of the spiral berms as natural pest-repellants and to attract beneficial predators of pests to the farm.
We now have a fully functioning urban training farm, with a full workforce (our farmers in training) and a nearby orphanage we support, plus weekly buyers of our produce from our community - when we are able to harvest.
Our farm is able to sustain itself and meet our goal of feeding 1014 children a day while developing future farmers, with our extensive and clever use of all the land available, and our rotating plots planting plan, and our community education events. Also our retail nursery and half the crops will be for sale to our local community, which will all help cover the running costs of the NPC. This will happen when all the plots and nursery have matured and are productive - which will be by the end of 2016.
To reach the point of being sustainable on our own, we have a challenge of getting through the next two months.
Our crops are only going to be harvestable by December, and the farm needs to run until then. We need to raise 4800 Pounds (R80 000) per month, that’s a total of 9600 pounds (R160 000) for our October and November month end expenses. We can only reach a small portion of that through our community tours, nursery sales and our veggies sales, due to our plots not being fully grown yet.
What are the funds for
The running costs of the farm are 4800 Pounds per month with a modest budget that covers just the bare essentials. These include:
- Electricity to run the borehole, irrigation farmhouse and Farming hub
- Rent of the land
- Website costs to facilitate orders, sales and delivery of veggies to the community
- Wages for the farming staff
- Seeds to keep the planting going until we are harvesting our own seeds
- Fertilisers until our production meets our demand
- Anti-pest until our production meets our demand
- Chicken and duck food
- Vehicle running costs to get the food to the children and materials to the farm
- Accounting fees to keep our books transparent and in line
- Soil tests to ensure we are adding the correct organic fertiliser recipes
- Insurance for our office equipment and vehicle
The farm can easily feed 1014 children per month from December 2016, which is only two months away. Until then, we need some support and financial assistance to ensure we get to our longer term sustainability plans and improvement to the farm to increase yields.
We have worked out a plan, and your support and funds will be going towards either feeding an orphan or creating a job by teaching a future farmer.
R 78.75 / £ 4.60 feeds one child for a month
R 787.50 / £ 46.00 feeds ten children for a month
R 945.00 / £ 55.20 feeds one child for a year
R 9,450.00 / £ 552.00 feeds ten children for a year
How many orphans can you afford to help feed?
R 105,179.70 / £ 6,150.00 pounds to house, feed and train a farmer for a year who can then grow food for the children at or near other child care centers.
About the project owners
Jacques Damhuis has been involved in the conception and creation of our farm from the very early stages. He formalised Growing Healthy Foods NPC in 2016 with the aim to set up sustainable farms throughout Africa, starting with our current training center designed to harness nature to the fullest. He has over 27 years of food growing experience and knows the importance of children eating nutritious food. Jacques also understands that nutrition in produce is based on the soil health, as some vitamins are made by microbes and absorbed by the roots.
Yelang runs a informative television network through Africa called ‘Access Africa’. This television show takes the business viewer across the continent, exploring how business is grown on the African continent. Yelang will be ensuring our future expansion plans in Africa are done transparently and she will be marketing us through her Access Africa show.
Zain has worked with social development organisations for over 5 years in impoverished areas and has joined forces with Jacques to set up sustainable farms for socioeconomic sustainability in communities. Zain will be ensuring our business side is kept up to date and organised as per the rules of Not for Profit Organisations.