School Market Gardens

 
$6,475
$1,525
Raised
Remaining
Jan 11, 2011

RAIN Brings a Garden and New Life to Bonfeba!

Bonfeba countryside, a lush landscape for Niger.
Bonfeba countryside, a lush landscape for Niger.

There are a number of organizations that donate food to some of Niger’s schools each year.  These gifts are generous and appreciated, but once the food is gone, the same barren schools with the same hungry children remain.  Not so for Bonfeba. 

Bonfeba is a village located on the Niger River, in the Tillaberi region, approximately a two-hour journey from the capital, Niamey.  Though the village does have a state run boarding school, enrollment has been historically low due to lack of food or supplies at the school for the children. Without sustainable agriculture, Bonfeba, like many communities in Niger, had no food reserves to carry through the harsh summer of drought and food shortages.

With RAIN's help, along with the parents of Bonfeba, Rotary International, and supporters like you, Bonfeba is getting a leg up. This fall, a half-acre school market garden has been installed - complete with well, cistern and drip irrigation system.  RAIN is introducing the community to drip irrigation to provide an ideal flow of water to the garden, while using much less water than traditional irrigation methods do. This garden will grow fresh food for the children, as well as produce cash crops to pay garden expenses and generate funds for the school, which has 247 children -- many of whom must live there while their parents search for pasture land. The garden project also includes a surrounding fence to protect it from animals, a motor pump to pull water from the well, and a gardener salary for the first three months.

Not only will the students of Bonfeba school now have food to eat, but the whole community will have clean drinking water for the very first time as a result of this project. Bonfeba is located beside a shallow and stagnant pool of water that served as the community’s only source of drinking water until RAIN dug Bonfeba’s first well. This water will bring better health to hundreds who regularly suffer from dysentery and other illnesses caused by a polluted water supply.

The village chief of Bonfeba, Dr. Bako, expressed to RAIN staff Abdou Koini: “This modern garden brings much hope for future food security in Bonfeba. It gives us the possibility of generating food, along with money to help the school.  In the view of this community, this garden project is salutary!”

With the kids now in school and the community poised to support itself through future tough times, we think you'll agree!

Bonfeba garden gate.
Bonfeba garden gate.
Students at Bonfeba school eating lunch.
Students at Bonfeba school eating lunch.
New hope for children of Bonfeba!
New hope for children of Bonfeba!
Students and teachers welcome much needed supplies
Students and teachers welcome much needed supplies
Drip irrigation for the Bonfeba garden.
Drip irrigation for the Bonfeba garden.
Oct 23, 2010

Update: New Gardens are Brought to Life

Garden in Tchifiniten
Garden in Tchifiniten

RAIN is happy to report that we have successfully installed five new gardens in the Tillaberi region of Niger since January. Installed with the partnership of the Tadiben, Enekre, Tadek, and Abalama communities, they are 100% organic and utilize drip irrigation, with only 25% of the water needed for traditional trough systems.  The wells installed with the gardens also provide clean drinking water, as they are protected from the elements and not used by animals.

RAIN is currently building another new garden in partnership with Rotary International for the Bonfeba school -- complete with irrigation system, fencing, seeds, and supplies.  As with all RAIN gardens, the Bonfeba garden will have the added benefit of providing food for the school lunch program for the school's 250 students. 

Once installed, the gardens are managed by a gardener chosen by the community and trained by RAIN, who in turn provides instruction to the community. Part of the cost of every RAIN garden project is the gardener salary, as well as fuel for the motor pump which pulls the water from the well.  After one or two growing seasons, (there are three growing seasons a year in Niger), the gardens are, in addition to providing food for students, generating sufficient cash crops to pay for all of the garden's ongoing expenses from that point forward, creating a truly sustainable and renewable resource for the entire community.

RAIN's gardens, with your help, provide the opportunity for each partner community to invest in their own food security.  Thank you!  More to come soon.

Installing the garden in Tagantassou
Installing the garden in Tagantassou
Garden in Lemdou
Garden in Lemdou
Gardener in Tangouchman
Gardener in Tangouchman

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Organization

Rain for the Sahel and Sahara

Portsmouth, New Hampshire, United States
http://www.rain4sahara.org

Project Leader

Julia D'Orazio

Office Manager
Portsmouth, NH United States

Where is this project located?

Map of School Market Gardens