AIDS orphans are among the most forgotten children and the hungriest. Over 500 youth will be trained in conservation farming, giving them skills needed to grow nutritious vegetables in arid areas. As the children learn how to plant, harvest and produce their food, they learn valuable life and gardening skills so that they can fend for themselves and can be marketable due to their competencies as gardeners. This project, in partnership with Seed Program International, will be life-saving.
Food is scarce for orphans in Uganda, particularly if they've lost a parent or two to AIDS. Children are going to bed hungry, making it hard for them to concentrate on school work and their daily activities. Since we know that HIV+ children need even more food than healthier children in order to keep infections at bay and their bodies strong, we find that the lack of food is a huge detriment to them.
We provide training in conservation farming to the eldest child/guardian in an orphan household, including composting, seed saving, planting, and other topics. Non GMO seeds are given to the kids to plant gardens. Monitoring will be provided so that the kids are not left alone while gardens grow. Kale, spinach, maize, tomatoes, peppers, squashes, and other nutritious food will be harvested for them to eat. Seeds are saved for next year. Youth get stronger with good food and return to school.
Over 500 children plus their guardians receive food and life-saving skills. This, in turn, will arrest the vicious cycle of hunger and food distribution year after year. Another huge bonus is that the children and their families will learn to be self-reliant.