Baraa Primary School always had a little vegetable garden. It mainly produced vegetables for the teachers. IThemba decided to cultivate enough vegetables to supplement the school lunch and increase its nutrition.
In January 2014 the little vegetable garden was transformed in a large garden with more than 30 beds. Using volunteers with experience in farming, gardening and agriculture, we designed a watering system. With the help of local NGO's and businesses we grew indigenous plants, high in vitamins and protein. It has been a huge success. We grow so many organic vegetables we have been able to sell the surplus and use the money to buy new seeds.
AVRDC The World Vegetable Center is one of the organisations who donated seed kits and training to help expand the school garden. They have created a short film to show the positive impacts of those donations for the school.
The school vegetable garden is essential to our feeding program. It provides all of our pupils with vitamin rich vegetables for lunch. It helps us combat the severe malnutrition we are discovering in many of the pupils. It also enables us to teach our pupils about good agricultural methods.
Silas is more than a teacher to us - he is our brother (kaka in Kiswahili). Living on the streets, he decided to take the opportunity given to him and change his life. He is an example to me, young but earning his own living. I believe that education is much more than teaching. Sometimes it means developing a given talent!
Silas started working at Baraa Primary School in January 2014 after installation of the new vegetable garden. He was trained at the Watoto foundation in USA River and concluded his education in October 2014. The vegetable garden is his habitat, not only to develop it, but also to teach in particular the pupils of the SEN unit. He teaches how to use tools, plant beds and take care of the different vegetables. Since green vegetables are the key to fight against malnutrition, he plays a very important role in our feeding program.