our new garden at Matulani
We have just finished our most productive period ever in Mtito Andei, Kenya.
Over the last two months we have erected a new greenhouse that will provide fresh vegetables to over 256 more children at Matulani elementary school. We are currently growing tomatoes inside the greenhouse and kale outside. Our giant greenhouse (a 5K professional structure) is large enough to keep the elephants away. It is so large that the elephants stay away from our kale and our water supply.
One of the challenges of our new Matulani garden is the additinal cost of water. The school is connected to the city of Mtito's plumbing network so it will cost us an aditional $125 per month to irrigate the garden in the dry season. Unfortunately, the dry season in Mtito lasts for about eight months.
Our master gardener from our existing successful garden at Matangini (20 minutes away by mortorbike) is overseeing our new garden. This, however, is too much work for one gardener. We are looking to add a second master gardener and this will be an additional expense of $120 per month. Thanks to generous past donations from longtime donors Patrick Firouzian and the Trover Family Foundation of Oregon -- as well as ongoing individual donations from Global Giving (including $100 per month from Carolyn Stoebuck), this garden is funded through the end of the year!
We are also happy to report that 100 healthy chicks were purchased from an excellent producer and deliverd to our new hen house Matulani. We spent $1,265 on a three month program that will end up producing 200 eggs a day for several years. The high expense is due to the costs of layers mash and the professional care fo the chicks. Chicks are very fragile and easily stressed.
After three months, 50 of our 100 chicks will be transfered to our brand new hen house at Matagnini school. The current chickens we keep at Matangini are too old to lay healthy eggs. Instead, these chickens are being fed well in anticipation of their slaughter. The meat will of course we delivered to the area's poorest families.
Our greenhouse at Matangini has been successfullly replanted and is doing wonderful.
The vegetables from our gardens and eggs from our hen houses fuel school lunch programs for 600 children who would other wise not be able to concentrate at school due to hunger! Our school lunches also convince local parents to return their children to school!
In a new program, over 30 of the poorest local children who previously dressed only in rags we given new clothes by Global Roots represenative Richtie Mutua. 15 children even got to pick out their own clothes. This is important because these children no longer have to feel inferior when they go to school.
Recently we launched an HIV/Aids campaign in Mtito Andei which will help enhance local knowledge about this disease. We have attached a photo of a recent outreach session below.