Lentswe, Jouberton - Four community institutions will get help from the North West Department of Agriculture and Rural Development to help them to produce vegetables for the community members they host.
The department adopted Jouberton’s Tsamma Secondary School, Techford Disability Centre, Emmanuel Disabled and Old Age Center and KhayaTshepo Home of Hope for Vulnerable Children and given them food security projects to sustain their need to have food.
MEC Desbo Mohono in partnership with Matlosana Local Municipality handed over food security projects to 150 indigent families and the four institutions on Wednesday 17 July.
One of the 150 household beneficiaries’, Mpho Christina Tamane (63) has been staying in Jouberton since 1994. She says that she survives on her government grant and selling vegetables from her garden.
“I am very happy that government realises the importance of food security and that I am one of the beneficiaries of this project. The extended vegetable garden will help me make more profit as there is now a variety of vegetables that people can buy. The increase in profits will enable her to help her 8-year-old grandchild with basic necessities and other household needs,” Tamane said.
In addition, the manager at the Emmanuel Disability and Old Age Centre, Keikobile Martha Magabe expressed her gratitude towards the initiative and hopes that the department continues to assist many other centres that take care of the vulnerable with projects that contribute positively in their lives. “The centre has been running since 2010 and currently houses 190 people with various vulnerabilities including orphans, victims of abuse and former drug addicts that no longer want to live with their families because of numerous challenges,” Magabe said.
She added that the garden tools, seedlings received will assist with the challenge of nutrition and food insecurity within the centre. The centre was also handed 40 chickens.
Mohono highlighted that North West is ranked as one of the most food insecure provinces in the country and has committed to delivering more projects.
“I want to see North West citizens having access to quality nutritious food and living a healthy lifestyle. This project should be the foundations for our communities’ to start food markets in order for them earn money to be able to sustain their livelihoods,” she said.
She encouraged beneficiaries to sustain their gardens and assured them that the department’s extension and advisory services will assist with continuous monitoring and support as well as proper maintenance of the gardens.
Identified families consist of unemployed youth, women, the poor and the vulnerable. They have received agricultural inputs, seedlings as well as feed so they can intensively engage in agricultural activities and contribute to poverty reduction at household level. The department will further assist to provide infrastructure for all projects.