Feb 22, 2021

Progress report for August 2020 - January 2021

Sustainable palm oil

Shortly after finishing the foundation of the oil palm mill we covered the whole space with a nice step wise roof   Just look how beautiful this mill is! Now we are only waiting for the land to be electrified by the national grid before we can start producing a sustainable palm oil (capacity: 1'000 - 3'000 liters of oil per DAY!)

Think about it: just the weigh of the cement alone that we used to build the mill is more than 10 tons!!!!

And who came to check the progress? Can you guess? No way! The Swiss Ambassador in Ghana together with his family visited our place to see how we are progressing (the Swiss embassy gave us a grant for the project  )

 

 

Bio gas plant 

Right beside the palm oil mill we have built a bio gas plant, which will treat the waste coming from the mill and produce bio gas to be used for cooking or as a liquid fertilizer for our agriculture needs 

 

 

Organic Farm Certificate

         

The biggest highlight of this new year - we have received an organic certification from the PGS (Participatory Guarantee System) label    And this is already in our first session!!

 

Educating the community - spreading the knowledge so needed

         

         

Under the name "Food Systems Caravan Dissemination Tour 2020" we successfully completed a tour through 3 regions: central, western-north, and western parts of Ghana. During the tour we showed educational videos about sustainable and organic agriculture in different farming communities and senior high schools. Result? More than 200 farmers and 100 students were inspired by the film and could ask us questions directly.

Thanks to the SNF for funding this project

 

And in a beautiful place like Busua we can always replenish our energy and relax after a hard week.
Greetings from Ghana

Links:

Oct 22, 2020

Progress report for July - September 2020

Dear friends and supporters,

We truly hope and your family are healthy and safe during these uncertain times, and especially in the face of the "second wave" of corona cases.

For us in Ghana, it seems that the situation has stabilized since September and the number of cases has decreased. Ghana was even ranked as the 'best' responsive country in Africa on COVID-19 prevention measures and other factors. Though the situation in the labor market does not look so good. Ghana's Trades Union Congress (TUC) estimates that more around 500'00 jobs were lost in less than 6 months after the first COVID-19 case in March 2020 and jobs of about 11.2 million people in Ghana were affected. The number might be not as big as in Europe and America but for a small country like Ghana, it represents a disaster for many families - in many households, there is only one person who owns a job and earns a living for the rest of the family.

In light of the worsening economic situation, our work becomes even more meaningful. The benefits of building a learning center where locals can get an education on how to grow sustainable food with minimum resources, as well as creating new jobs within our organization are clear.

And you are a part of this development process. We would like to thank you once again for your engagement and donations

We hope that you will welcome our efforts. However, if you no longer wish to receive the newsletter, please use the unsubscribe button at the end of the email.


Kind regards,
Dr. Christian Andres
OPC President

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Say NO to plastic
At OPC in Busua, our new water filtration system is working perfectly well and provides the whole team with high-quality drinking water. In only 5 months we have filtered about 15'000 liters and thus saved approximately 15'000 plastic bottles/1'000 big and 30'000 small plastic bags!!! We all are so happy with the new system.

Water is Life

 

Harvest and construction of the dryer
As you can see in the pictures above, we were manually harvesting white and yellow maize. Fuffff   What hard work!!! Afterward, we had to carry the crops to the post-harvest site, thresh it and then apply two stages drying process. To help us with the drying process and in order to better preserve the crops for long term storage, it was decided to purchase a Ghana-made solar dryer from a local innovative company. This machine is capable of drying up to 2 tonnes of grain per day!

All in all, we collected almost 10 TONNES of grain - manually!!! And do not forget that w never used ANY kind of pesticides or fertilizes - pure organic. By the way, our first PGS organic certification exercise was successful and we were recommended as "fully in conversion"

At the moment we are busy planting the second season crops: groundnuts, millet, cowpeas, and soybeans.

 

Replenishing the energies
After much hard work, a little party at the beach to replenish the energy was welcomed by the OPC family

Jun 23, 2020

Progress report for March - June 2020

Slowly but surely the construction of our learning center is becoming a reality.

1. A lot of material has to be transported to build the foundations of future buildings. Carpenters impregnate plywood to prevent rapid decay and the mushroom team takes care of the harvest to provide us with vegetarian protein - the youngest team member is especially happy about this.

2. The biggest news is that we have completed the main structures of our workshop, the complete garden house, and the foundations of the food processing center and the residential house. Now we are mainly working on the roofs, and then on the finishing touches.  

3. We have also brought more color to the area around the farm, for example by painting our water tank, which now welcomes the people with a warm "Akwaaba".

4. And of course, we work hard every day to make the degraded soil fertile for the cultivation of cassava, yams, corn, and plantains.

5. Some members help to preserve cucumbers by turning them into pickles to feed the team during the rain season.

 
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