Some 40 self-organised community members of ‘Tuvalimine Ngavalye’ community garden from Katwitwi settlement in Mpungu Constituency recently received garden tools, seeds and pesticides to start an income-generating community gardening project. The garden project would also contribute to food production in an area where many are unemployed and living in poverty.
‘Tuvalimine Ngavalye’ roughly translates as ‘Let’s plant for them to eat’.
Katwitwi settlement is at the Namibia-Angola border post in Kavango West Region, some 35km west of Nkurenkuru. The assistance came from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Namibia (ELCIN) Department of Diakonia and Social Services.
“We gave them wheelbarrows, hoes, spades and shovels, knapsacks and some mesh wire for them to erect a fence around their garden, metal rakes, measuring tape as well as watering cans, pesticides and a variety of vegetable seeds, so that they can start their garden project,” said Martin Alfred, a field officer for ELCIN Department of Diakonia and Social Services for Kavango West, Kavango East and Zambezi Region.
Alfred handed the equipment to the community together with the ELCIN initiative against malaria project coordinator, Jalo Seolwane.
According to Alfred, the Katwitwi community came up with a request for support to start an income-generating activity and since that is one of the strategic priorities of the organisation in support of the community’s livelihood, ELCIN donated garden tools, seeds and pesticides valued at N$10 000.
“Actually our strategic priorities are focused on four pillars, and one of them is sustainability of livelihood. Our focus is not only on malaria prevention but we also want to take care of the community – we look at how we can assist people to better their living standards,” Alfred added.
The community managed to get a portion of land where they will start their gardening project, which will involve a group of 40 community members who are from different households.
“If they will start with their garden project they will reduce the dependency of getting vegetables from Nkurenkuru, where they buy their veggies but which is like more than 30km away, and they will sell some and get cash to buy food and goods,” Alfred noted.