Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin

by Measurement Matters
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin
Economic empowerment of 51 families in Medellin

Our gardeners from Comuna 8 came into the project in April 2018 with the goals of increasing dignified economic opportunities and improved peaceful coexistence in the neighborhood. In an exciting collaboration, we were able to train 30 gardeners at El Cerro de Los Valores during a 6-month SENA Emprende Rural horticulture course, which wrapped up in November. During this training, the Medellin fine-dining restaurant, Carmen, partnered with the project and purchased organic produce from the gardeners and other established gardens such as the Corporación Jardin Ecológico (CJE) in Llanaditas. In August, Carmen restaurant held its “Parche Rolo” charity dinner and raised funds which were invested in purchasing resources for the gardeners of the CJE group and those from the SENA course.

 

While some of our original gardeners continue to work with CJE and Carmen, others have formed a new group called 8Huertas and participate in Mercados Colaborativos together. 8Huertas is a social learning group with redefined values, which focus on providing local access to fresh and affordable produce and promoting healthy diets, urban farming knowledge, and supporting their families through participation in small markets.

 

With this dynamic group of gardeners trained and the donated materials distributed, Fundación E2E officially brought its Huertas Urbanas project and related activities to an end in December. The gardeners expressed gratitude for the support and opportunities they have had with SENA and E2E and we would like to thank all of the project’s participants for their dedication and hard work. We wish 8Huertas and all of our gardeners the very best going forward and look forward to seeing what they achieve together!

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SENA
SENA

Vegetables are growing! The gardeners are forming alliances to cultivate together and are exploring innovate ideas! We are happy to say that a lot of progress and changes have been made since our last update.

Emerging urban gardeners are half way through a 6-month horticultural training course with SENA, the official government technical training entity in Colombia. Based in La Comuna 8, an area of Medellín with 69% of the population reporting to have no income, the course is providing the participants with hands on experience and a practical classroom education to grow a productive vegetable garden. Given that cultivating a garden takes time and commitment, we’ve seen our core gardener group size down to 30 dedicated gardeners. They are a diverse mix of people from La Comuna 8, other neighborhoods of Medellín and even a few that live in towns surrounding the city. They bring a wide range of experiences and interests to the table, from the younger gardeners who are actively collaborating together in projects that use urban gardening techniques like hydroponics, to adults from 50-70 years of age that are utilizing family terrace or patio space to propagate plant starts and grow vegetables.

We’ve expanded the project to include individuals and families from other areas of Medellín because of the interest we’ve seen in this project. Although there is a higher rate of unemployment in La Comuna 8, the city as a whole still struggles with employment with a significant number of families not earning a minimum monthly wage, which in Colombia is only $266 US. We continue to work with other NGOs, such as World Vision, in the city to identify new families that could benefit from this project in La Comuna 8.

Weekly produce sales have been happening between the gardeners and local gastronomy entrepreneur, Pedro Fernández, Founder of The Chef is Back, who purchases the garden harvests at a fair, fixed price. We have sold Organic Pearl Tomatoes, Hydroponic Basil, Organic Lettuce, Organic Kale, Chard, Onions and Broccoli too. If the produce is not certified organic it is grown with organic practices.

Once the gardeners have established gardens that produce high quality produce in high demand from buyers, they will generate positive cash flow and will not require any further investment after an initial donation.

Thank you for your continued support to these urban gardeners. We hope you’ll reach out to us to learn more and we welcome anyone to come for tour in Medellín! Send us a message at huertas@fundacione2e.org.

SENA
SENA
SENA
SENA
SENA
SENA
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This week we begin a course to train 70 local gardeners with SENA, the  official government technical training entity. E2E´s Germán Sanín, who is also a technical advisor for the gardeners, will be teaching the course to involve more familes, and have a greater impact. 

La Comuna 8 is home to over 135,000 people who face daily challenges to find formalized work and break the cycle of poverty:

  • 69% of the population reports to have no income, and 26% of those with jobs earn below minimum wage
  • High level of displaced people; La Comuna 8 has 11% of all displaced people within Medellin
  • High rates of violence, crime and gang activity

In several neighborhoods in La Comuna 8, we propose to give community members an additional form of income by:

  1. Constructing communal and personal gardens for growing fruits and vegetables.
  2. Linking the communities and a local gastronomy entrepreneur, Pedro Fernández, Founder of The Chef is Back!, to purchase these fruits and vegetables at a fixed, fair price.

Once construction of the gardens is complete, they will generate positive cash flow and will not require any further investment after an initial donation.

What are the benefits?

By providing an at-risk community with additional sources of income, this project will enable those involved to break out of the cycle of poverty. Furthermore, studies show that for communities that suffer from violence and a lack of peaceful coexistence greatly benefit from productive activities outdoors such as gardening, otherwise known as “ecotherapy”—a powerful tool to generate cooperation and meaningful work in areas that have historically suffered from local violence and poverty. This project will be linked to two other E2E projects: Recuperando Vida, and Indicators for Peace.

We will also be throwing a fundraiser event the 17th of April in Medellín-- so look out for more information to attend! 

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La Comuna 8 is home to over 135,000 people who face daily challenges to find formalized work and break the cycle of poverty:

  • 69% of the population reports to have no income, and 26% of those with jobs earn below minimum wage
  • High level of displaced people; La Comuna 8 has 11% of all displaced people within Medellin
  • High rates of violence, crime and gang activity

In several neighborhoods in La Comuna 8, we propose to give community members an additional form of income by:

  1. Constructing communal and personal gardens for growing fruits and vegetables.
  2. Linking the communities and a local gastronomy entrepreneur, Pedro Fernández, Founder of The Chef is Back!, to purchase these fruits and vegetables at a fixed, fair price.

By providing an at-risk community with additional sources of income, this project will enable those involved to break out of the cycle of poverty. Furthermore, studies show that for communities that suffer from violence and a lack of peaceful coexistence greatly benefit from productive activities outdoors such as gardening, otherwise known as “ecotherapy”—a powerful tool to generate cooperation and meaningful work in areas that have historically suffered from local violence and poverty. This project will be linked to two other E2E projects: Recuperando Vida, and Indicators for Peace.

The total Investment for this project is $26,000 USD and project implementation in 2018 is still contingent on funding. 

Will you consider starting off the year right and giving a gift to the Huertas Urbanas Project? 

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La Comuna 8 is home to over 135,000 people who face daily challenges to find formalized work and break the cycle of poverty. Aside from experiencing unacceptably high rates of violence, crime, and gang-related activity, Comuna 8 suffers:

  1. Acute levels of unemployment - with 69% of the population reporting to have no income, and 26% of those with jobs which earn below minimum wage
  2. High levels of displaced people - 11% of Medellin’s displaced population resides in Comuna 8

We at E2E believe that it is often those simple, human touches that can inspire change and empower communities. For this reason, we have been committed to our ‘Huertas Urbanas’ project which involves the construction of urban gardens as a community-led solution to violence and poverty.

With the completion of each garden, at-risk communities are able to actively generate additional sources of income that will enable them to break out of the cycle of poverty. We link these communities with local entrepreneur, Pedro Fernández (Founder of The Chef is Back!) who now purchases the produce form the huertas at a fixed and fair price, thus generating a positive cash flow that does not require further investment following the initial donation. Furthermore, studies show that for communities that suffer from violence and a lack of peaceful coexistence greatly benefit from productive activities outdoors such as gardening, otherwise known as “ecotherapy”—a powerful tool to generate cooperation and meaningful work in areas that have historically suffered from local violence and poverty.

This project will be linked to two other E2E projects: Recuperando Vida, and Indicators for Peace. As donors or potential donors, your support is vital in ensuring that we continue the progress we are making with this grassroots yet immensely ambitious project. 

Many thanks from the E2E team! 

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Organization Information

Measurement Matters

Location: Bogota, Bogota D.C. - Colombia
Website:
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Twitter: @measurementm
Measurement Matters
Teryn Wolfe
Project Leader:
Teryn Wolfe
Medellin, Antioquia Colombia

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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