Do more than plant a garden.
Grow a healthy family!
Written by Dahlia Guajardo on March 20, 2014 in News & Events
Spring is here!
To celebrate the season, we’re inviting you to help plant 200 family gardens in Tanzania. Together, we can stand with parents as they learn techniques to harvest nutritious food for their families. Vegetables are rich in vitamins that kids need to grow, but too many parents in Tanzania can’t afford carrots, kale, spinach, and other leafy greens. Because land is scarce, farming families focus their efforts on cultivating staples like corn and bananas. Vegetables are expensive and parents often have little extra cash for buying produce outside the home. The result is that nearly half of Tanzanian children aren’t growing properly. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
Together, we’re creating new statistics. In Tanzania, Plant With Purpose teaches farmers sowing and composting methods that increase yields by 65 percent. These high-yield gardens, known as double dugs, are ideal for small vegetable beds because they maximize the available soil and water. Even with little land or cash, families can still cultivate the nutritious food they need to see their children grow with dignity.
So, what’s in a garden?
To start with, peas, carrots, and spinach. These vegetables sprout atop rounded raised plots beside Furaha Mamuya’s home. She lives in Moshi Rural District, an area tucked into the mountains of northern Tanzania. Smooth paved roads lie along the main route, leading climbers up to Kilimanjaro, not far from Furaha’s home. The small dirt paths winding through her community stand in stark contrast to the tourist circuit. But Furaha is making the most of her resources.
With her vegetable crop, Furaha in not only providing her teenage son with the nutrients he needs, she is also paying for his education. High school isn’t free in Tanzania, and many parents struggle to give their children an education beyond primary school. To help improve her and her son’s life, Furaha joined a Plant With Purpose Village Savings and Loan Association (VSLA). She learned to save her money, use loans to start small businesses, and received training in high-yield double dug gardens.
With her savings and a few loans, Furaha has purchased pigs, goats, and cows for her small farm. Her animals enhance the family’s diet with needed protein and also provide fertilizer for the garden. Furaha has also earned enough cash to put electricity in her home by selling her calves and extra produce. Lights inside the home allow her son to study in the evenings and excel in school. For Furahah and her son, growing a garden means more than just vegetables. It means nutrition, education, and a better life.
This Spring, Furaha and the gardens we plant in Tanzania remind us of God’s provision and delight in attending to the needs of His children. Let’s walk alongside the rural poor, honoring farming families’ commitment to the land with training to increase crop yields and help parents provide more nutritious food for their children. Come celebrate renewed hearts and restored livelihoods with us today by planting a garden to grow healthy families!