With much excitement, the Greenhands Community Food Garden project in Stompneus Bay on the West Coast and Middelpos Farm near Malmesbury received the news that the Western Cape Government will be funding their respective projects in this current financial year.
Petronella Ponie of the Greenhands Community Food Garden Project says that the project will provide Stompneus Bay with an affordable, nutritious and sustainable food source.
Ponie says: “It has been hard work to get the garden established. Our volunteers are mostly women. They have been fantastic. Through their hard work, we have been able to plant our first vegetables and take the first step towards food security.”
Minister Meyer, who handed over seedlings, and gardening equipment to the project, said:
“This partnership between the Western Cape Government and the community of Stompneus Bay improves access to nutritious food and improved food security. In addition, the Greenhands Community Food Garden Project will provide a sustainable source of food to the community.”
The grant funding provides for irrigation, fencing, water tanks, garden tools and production inputs such as seedlings, fertilizer compost and a container for storage purposes.
The Middelpos Farm is 60ha in size and has 13 families who are the direct beneficiaries of the produce on this farm.
Current farming activities include olives, Shiraz grapes, vegetables, agro-processing, and other arts and crafts aimed at project sustainability and skills transfer.
Grant funding from the Western Cape Department of Agriculture allows for establishing an agro-processing plant, improved mechanization and production inputs for vegetables.
“Ultimately, both these projects are about providing sustainable livelihoods and dignity through agriculture to the participants,” says Meyer.