Dec 28, 2013

Seeds are Planted, New Project Posted.

Chinese Cabbage, School Garden, Haiti
Chinese Cabbage, School Garden, Haiti

As mentioned in last report, this GlobalGiving project has been fully funded. We are so very thankful for good people like you who made this happen! The vegetable seeds you helped send to Haiti have been received, and some have been planted in school gardens and homes. More on that in a moment, but first . .  .

. . . did you enjoy supporting our work via GlobalGiving, and seeing your charitable giving provide seeds and training so that a next generation facing great odds in Haiti can become healthy and self-sufficient? If you did, please consider making a further tax-deductible donation to Seed Programs International. We've posted a new project, supporting a partnership in Honduras. Learn more and give here: www.globalgiving.org/projects/seeds-for-honduras/. Thank you!

Meanwhile, in Haiti, the always-tricky international shipping process succeeded, but not without a hiccup: an unexpected, unofficial "fee" was charged to release the parcels at the airport - very typical in many countries worldwide. But all the cartons of seed packets did get into the right hands in the end. Lead agronomist Wedly Deceus writes: "I did the germination test, and I decided to submit you some pictures of your seed. All these pictures were taken in 8 different school gardens. Thank you so much for your help."

Attached are a couple photos of these first young plants that sprouted from your generosity.

Peppers, School Garden, Haiti
Peppers, School Garden, Haiti
First Harvest, Rooftop Garden, Haiti
First Harvest, Rooftop Garden, Haiti
SPI Seed Packets are Printed in Local Languages.
SPI Seed Packets are Printed in Local Languages.
Dec 18, 2013

A Boost from Rotary

Vegetables on Hillside
Vegetables on Hillside

Dear Supporters,

We're still in the fundraising (with your help!) and planning stage for this project in Honduras, so we can't yet bring you the stories and outcomes from the field that will eventually emerge.

In the meantime, here's an interesting profile of the farmer group in Honduras who would receive the seeds: http://www.ccic.ca/_files/en/working_groups/003_food_2009-03_case_study_honduras.pdf

As you will read there, this is not a set of passive "aid recipients," but rather an engaged group of rural farmers working hard to be part of their own transformation to better self-sufficiency.

While the project has yet to truly launch, there is one exciting piece of news to share: a $1500 donation from a Rotary project based in Asheville, North Carolina, called Rotarians Against Hunger. With this commitment, we're a big jump closer to our goal and have reduced the goal on this site from $8800 to $7300.

Rotary is 1.1 million people strong, worldwide, and service is its foremost goal both internationally and at the club level. We're grateful for the support!

Finally, don't forget that donations to GlobalGiving projects -- ours or any others -- make great holiday gifts and options include e-cards, emailed cards to print at home, or mailed printed cards that GlobalGiving sends on your behalf.

Happy Holidays and a Good New Year to you,

Peter Marks, Seed Programs International

Participatory Farmer-Led Breeding Research
Participatory Farmer-Led Breeding Research
Nov 7, 2013

Seeds Sent!

kids gardening at school, Haiti
kids gardening at school, Haiti

Dear Friend of Seed Programs International,

This project is now fully funded! We've launched a second GlobalGiving project, found here: http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/seeds-for-honduras/, for those interested in charitable holiday giving or just eager to help support further deserving vegetable seed projects.

Back to Haiti: the shipment of four cartons of seeds only made possible by your support left East Rochester, New York for Hollywood, Florida last week. This week they will travel by air the short hop to Cap-Haitien via our friends at http://www.shipcasco.com/shiphaiti.htm who provide excellent and affordable service.

The seed selection includes cabbage, chinese cabbage, carrot, okra, hot pepper, bell pepper, tomato, garden bean, red onion, and eggplant. This represents a variety of foods that can be readily grown by schoolchildren, households, and farmer cooperatives, fit well into the Haitian diet, and are sellable at market to bring needed extra income. Some of the crops, like the chinese cabbage, will do better in highland areas while others such as the okra will better thrive in the hotter lowlands. Our partners in Haiti have strong agricultural training and will select and distribute seeds accordingly.

These partners include three programs who together reach a broad span of north Haiti:

  • Ayiti KonseVet ("Keep Haiti Green") - AKV
  • Initiative pour le Developpement Durable du Haiti- IDDH
  • La Pleiade

A hallmark of this collaboration is a strong training and capacity-building element. In the photo below, agronomist Brunet Robert is teaching a group of students about using a bucket-based drip irrigation system.

Animal production to complement the gardens and provide hard-to-find soil fertility is often part of the teaching. AKV lead agronomist Wedly Deceus says:

"I once again thank all donors and I reaffirm the relevance of all AKV’s activities to the lives of rural Haitians. We are a small organization but our results and effects are equal to the big guys with big money. In this spirit I hope we can continue with our efforts at renaissance of truly devastated communities like Mena, now that a start has been made – through a rabbit raising project and gardening. With these, AKV will continue in its mission of improving nutrition and income through education and agricultural restoration, of rural Haitians."

We will report again once we have news of use of these seeds, which could be 1-3 months away. Until then, please accept our deepest gratitude on behalf of the seed and training recipients at the schools, households, and farms of northern Haiti. 

                      

 

Teaching about Bucket Drip Irrigation
Teaching about Bucket Drip Irrigation
 
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