In a country where 85% of the population farms, many of the Manyinga students will need agricultural skills to support themselves. In most cases, children would learn farming techniques in the field at a parents’ side. But in a place where AIDS, malaria, and TB has decimated families, these skills may not be effectively passed on. With our support, the local community has implemented an innovative program to teach basic farming skills to the orphans and vulnerable children at the Manyinga schools.
An agronomist visits the schools one day per week, teaching the students basic farming and gardening skills. Students learn about timing and depth of seeding, the use of fertilizer and other crop inputs, efficient water use, weeding, and animal husbandry. Emphasis is on gardening among the lower grades and field crops among the higher grades. Everyone learns about animal husbandry and takes their turn to work with the goat herds. Students in higher grades also receive marketing training and entrepreneurship training integrated with their math classes.
In addition to the goal of providing these vulnerable children the skills necessary to become viable commercial farmers and successful gardeners, the output of the school’s farming and gardening efforts supplements the lunch program served at school, and generates income to support a portion of the schools’ operating costs.
However, there are often challenges in preparing, planting and fertilizing enough land in time to produce adequate harvest and food for the nutritional program, requiring the feeding program to be augmented. Shortages of materials can also affect the timeliness of crop or animal health treatment.
Your donations to the Manyinga Farm Initiative will help to overcome some of these challenges and will be used to:
- Purchase fruit trees to increase the orchard areas
- Pay for tools and pails and other gardening needs
- Pay for oxen and plough rental to help prepare land for planting
- Pay for fertilizer and other crop inputs and animal health products and help to offset the impact of inflation
- Pay for goats to augment the herd
- Pay for infrastructure such as fencing around gardens, orchards, goat herds, animal shelters, etc.
- Pay the Agronomist’s salary
Learn how you can make a difference in these children’s lives, and help support the Manyinga Project.
Click here to learn more about the schools.
Review Progress to Date.
"I have learned it is important to put medicines on the crops so that the bad things that eat the fruits, should not eat the fruits. My favourite thing to do in the orchards is to put water onto the fruits."