"The persistence of hunger this decade is unacceptable morally and socially," said John Kennedy in 1963. Five decades later malnutrition kills 2.6 million children under 5 yearly. Women are best positioned to save these lives, if equipped to do so. Most women farmers are busy growing the common staple crops like maize and cassava - these fill bellies but don't give nutrients to grow healthy minds and bodies. Income in Madagascar, for example, is 78 cents per day - here our seeds give hope.
If women had the same access to quality seeds, tools, and knowledge as men, increased food production in 34 developing countries would lead to 150 million fewer hungry people (UN). GlobalGiving donors will provide 65,000 seed packets - enough to grow 230 tons of food where it is needed most. With your help, we've already reached several project goals - thank you! Our new stretch goal will allow us to fund new garden projects, tools and other supplies, and skills training for women through 2018.
Seeds and knowledge have this in common: neither is a one-time, consumable resource; both can be multiplied and passed on to others. SPI partnerships help move populations to locally-driven solutions. For example, women can start small seed businesses to distribute seed purchased regionally in market towns or capital cities. Once a community is empowered with key knowledge of nutrition, gardening, marketing, and food preparation, vegetable gardening can become a self-perpetuating habit.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).
Seed Programs International Website
SPI Facebook Page
Women in Agriculture: Closing the Gender Gap