Since it was established in 2015, our Kitchen Garden project has been an enormous success for 230 nursery and primary aged pupils at We Are the Future (WAF) School in Sierra Leone. The aim is, not only to grow fresh produce for the school, but also to improve food security in the whole community.

Food security has been an increasing issue in Sierra Leone. The population affected by these insecurities has risen from 34% to 47.7% between 2019 and 2020, as researched by the World Food Programme. Although cities such as Freetown, were previously considered more food secure, it implies a growing challenge due to increasing prices, market availability and higher unemployment rates. Communities of low-socioeconomic background, such as Aberdeen where we work, are affected the most.

 

 

What does food insecurity mean exactly?

Food insecurity means that an individual does not have sufficient food to fulfil their energy needs and their nutrient requirements. In many cases, it is caused by environmental or economic shocks. Often households have to adopt various coping mechanisms, such as relying on staple foods only, cutting down the amount of food consumed, or even use income creating livestock as food. Due to the lack of nutrient rich foods, prolonged food insecurity can lead to deficiencies and impose a risk to an individual’s health. As children are still developing important functions of their bodies, it imposes a great risk for their future health.

Making communities more resilient is a major strategy to win the fight against food insecurity. With the sustainable development goals in mind, to end hunger and achieve food security by promoting sustainable food systems by 2030, we still have a lot of work to do!

Community gardens are a successful and sustainable approach to improve a community's resilience to disasters. They provide fresh and nutritious food, increase dietary diversity, and help to mitigate the devastating impacts of food insecurity. Not only do they have benefits regarding nutrition but can also strengthen a community’s economy, as surplus products can be sold and generate an income.

Click to see the plan to make our garden grow.

The community garden at We Are the Future school, has enabled us to provide the pupils with a daily warm meal and not only improved their overall health but also school attendance and their ability to focus during class. Good attendance and good focus means good results and a better future for that child! However, children in nearby schools continue to suffer from hunger and malnutrition and stand peering through the gates as our children eat. We are determined to put an end to this and as a result, we’re now launching our 'Stage Two School Garden Project'. With a bigger garden growing more vegetables, together with some extra kitchen supplies, we know we can help another 310 children get the nutritious meals they so desperately need.

As is so often the case, we really can make a small gift go a very long way. For instance, £9 will feed a child for a whole month; £18 will help to train a new gardener; £42 will pay for all the fertiliser needed for the garden for a month. You can even help towards the cost of a motorised tricycle and trailer to help us reach out to more schools nearby.

Any gift you can give - large or small - can help make our garden grow. Thank you.

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