In the heart of Mphanama village, Limpopo, a remarkable gardening project is transforming the lives of the “My Journey” AYP Program beneficiaries, particularly the Adolescent and Young People (AYPs). Implemented by the Institute of Health Programs and Systems (IHPS), this initiative aims to provide AYP led economic strengthening and empowerment in their Mphanama Safe Space. IHPS has partnered with Beyond Zero (BZ), an organization providing technical support in ensuring that the Global Fund mandate is implemented.
Since the inception of the gardening project, AYPs in Mphanama village have blossomed, showcasing their potential, and honing their skills in cultivating a vibrant vegetable garden. The safe space has provided them with an opportunity to share their experiences and reflect upon the positive impact the project has had on their lives.
The gardening project has yielded numerous benefits for the AYPs involved. They can take home the produce, ensuring access to fresh and nutritious food for themselves and their families. Additionally, these young individuals have embraced the spirit of giving back by donating a portion of their harvest to the local drop-in centre for youth, fostering a sense of community and solidarity.
Tomatoes, spinach, and cabbage are among the crops cultivated by the AYPs in Mphanama village. By embracing a diverse range of vegetables, these beneficiaries not only ensure a varied and balanced diet but also learn about sustainable agricultural practices and the importance of crop rotation.
To further equip the AYPs with essential knowledge and skills, the IHPS facilitated training sessions on manufacturing organic manure and the sustenance of greenery. This comprehensive training has enhanced their understanding of organic farming practices and empowered them to continue cultivating and maintaining green spaces within their community.
The impact of the gardening project extends beyond Mphanama village. Ten beneficiaries have been identified and adopted by the District Department of Agriculture in Sekhukhune for a learnership program. This exciting opportunity is expected to propel their growth within the agriculture sector and provide them with a solid foundation for a sustainable future.
This gardening project has undeniably brought about positive change in the lives of the AYPs involved. By providing them with a safe space to explore their potential, acquire skills in organic farming, and foster a sense of community, this initiative has proven that agriculture can be a transformative tool in breaking the chains of hunger and poverty. With the learnership program on the horizon, the AYPs in Mphanama village are poised to seize new opportunities and continue their journey towards a brighter and more prosperous future.
By Beyond Zero