World Community Service Projects sponsored by clubs in District 7750 are underway in multiple countries. The following projects are currently active:
The program is completing its fourth year of operation. Starting with a leased barren plot of land measuring 40 acres, it was converted into a flourishing farm producing a variety of vegetables, fruits and grains. After preparing the soil for planting, mostly by hand, 14,000 bananas were planted, and seeds were used to produce food for the hospital and clinics in the region, and distributed on an as needed basis. The fields were irrigated either by flood or drip methods. In addition, local farmers have been helped with the supply of seeds, tools and education in sustainable agriculture practices.
Last year a change in the program and types of planting took place to better focus on the crisis problem of Malnutrition among the children. Vegetables were practically eliminated and the fields used to make room for plantings of corn, peanuts and beans, all of which are key ingredients of three products used to eradicate malnutrition. A processing line was created to convert the produce into these products – Nourimil and Nourimanba, which at this time help to treat over 1500 children registered in the Malnutrition Program. The program will be expanded this year to treat 3000 children. As the demand is so great, 15 neighbors are now growing for PIA to increase the supply of peanuts. New crops are being sown such as soya beans, and trees for re-forestation, along with of a variety of fruit trees, are being grown from seed in the nursery of the farm.
The newest development working hand in hand with the Malnutrition is the Family Assistance program. Families with children in the Malnutrition program are being helped to improve their situation with advice from Agriculture Agents, supplies of tools, grains, fruit trees and the gift of a goat. More on goats... Grain and a kid after the first harvest and ‘drop’ will be returned to the program to further aid more families.
In 2007 110 families in desperate need, and with children in the Nutrition program, were registered in the FAP from the Commune of Boucan-Carre.
10 Agriculture Agents undertook 10 extensive training sessions to prepare for helping these families, and more are currently being formed.
After Graduation each agent was issued with a Certificate, books of reference, 1 spray kit, 2 rolls of string, 1 measure, 2 shovels, 2 rakes, 2 forks and a complete protective outfit for insect spraying.
All families were required to participate in 7 sessions of better farming techniques and methods of soil conservation, protection and re-forestation.
Since the implementation of this Family Assistance Program we have been able to note a marked difference in the lives of these families. They are able to work more easily, all the old parcels of land have been improved and some families have added new land.
The new vegetable gardens have contributed a source of protein and vitamins so important for the nutrition of not only of the children but the whole family.
The education and information learned through the training sessions has created a different way of thinking and reacting in the community and is resulting in a better treatment of the children. Actually thanks to this program many children have recuperated from malnutrition and those who have been treated remain stable without losing weight and becoming ill again.
This program of agricultural support has become an important preventative tool leading to the stability and augmenting of the family revenue.
This same program is being introduced in several other Malnutrition Centers and will hopefully have the same exciting and positive results for many other families currently living in despair and without hope for the future.
This is how Zanmi Lasante / Zanmi Agrikol hopes to win the battle against malnutrition and establish the benefits of a food security chain.
Rotary clubs in District 7750 have been supportive of the program from the start. They have provided funds for irrigation equipment, pumps, seeds and equipment for the processing of the grains going into the baby formula - about $75,000 to this time with another $75,000 each year needed in the next three years.
Partners in Agriculture is a subsidiary of Partners in Health, a 501C3 trust, but run separately.PIA has begun purchasing farm land alongside the leased land in order to establish a long term sustainable agriculture program, as well as an Agriculture college for the education and training of residents in trades such as farming, electricity, water, welding, mechanics and allied trades. Some 16 acres have so far been purchased.
A lot has been accomplished but a lot needs to be accomplished. With the help of Rotary and other organizations and individuals we will continue to make a difference.
District 7750 Clubs participating in this project are: Greater Greer, Fair Play, North Greenville, Pleasantburg, Aiken South, Aiken Breakfast, Greenville, Golden Strip Sunrise, and Greenwood.
A video of the PIA project was completed in May 07 and is available to present to 7750 Clubs should they wish to see what is being accomplished.
Given the state of the Stock Market, all those wise investors in goats will be pleased to hear that their investments have yielded 100% interest!!!
Yes, of the first 40 goats purchased by Zanmi Agrikol (Partners in Agriculture) for the families in their Family Assistance Program all 40 have produced kids.
As yet the little ones are still too small to re-distribute to new families, but this is a very exciting announcement, and we hope it will encourage even more wise investors to increase their holdings.
Please contact us at: Zanmi Agrikol, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Clemson University chapter of Engineers Without Borders-USA (EWB-USA) has been asked by the Foundation for Self-Sufficiency in Central America (FSSCA) to assist a local peasant organization in El Salvador with three projects to better the lives of 86 local communities that comprise the cooperative. In order of priority, the chapter has been asked to assist the NGO in:
These needs represent a commitment of 3 to 5 years between the teaming organizations, which also include the Yale School of Public Health.
Students and faculty from Clemson are expected to travel to El Salvador in Spring 2008 (during the students’ spring break) to do an initial site assessment trip, gather data and information, and begin implementation on various aspects of these projects.
This project was presented to us by Peter Demarco, our Ambassador scholar in Ghana. We need several clubs to participate in order to raise $5500 allowing us to apply for a matching grant to bring up to the $25,000 requested. The Clubs may contact Charles Warne for further information or to participate.