Since 2009, Seeds for a Future has enabled rural Guatemalans to dramatically increase their health, nutrition, and income. The Seeds Program incorporates a long-term strategy of self-reliance using the following elements: 1) Providing the training, seedlings, and starter animals that families use for creating their own permaculture gardens and protein sources. 2) Nutrition and health education. 3) Micro-business coaching. As of 2023, over 4,800 families have graduated from the Program.
In Guatemala, malnutrition affects 47% of children under the age of 5 and up to 70% of children in indigenous communities. Limited access to education, climate change, and the pandemic have all worsened conditions in rural areas. These high levels of chronic malnutrition have detrimental and irreversible effects on the mental and physical development of children, and further perpetuate the cycle of poverty.
The Casa Granja or 'backyard farm' program seeks to transform family nutrition through the principles of regenerative agriculture. Families receive equipment, education, and 1:1 support to build and maintain organic home gardens with nutrient-dense fruits, vegetables, and leafy greens. Our team of local leaders provides further training in kitchen hygiene and raising small animal protein. This holistic, embedded approach is time-tested and puts home-grown food on families' tables every day!
Access to nutritious food has far-reaching implications for the health and well-being of rural families and for the development of Guatemalan society at large. Over 10+ years of operation, we can now see improved family nutrition after the first harvest. We see a notable increase in feelings of confidence and self-respect after 3 months, and after 6 months, families may be able to generate household income by selling surplus at market. With resources and self-reliance, the sky is the limit.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).