Providing seeds for schools in Zambia. Thousands of rural children in Zambia have to walk several miles each way to get to school. In October the temperatures soar to over 40 degrees Celsius (100+ Fahrenheit), There has been no rain since April and food supplies become depleted. Children walk to school without breakfast, relying on a school feeding program, which could be there only meal of the day.
Rural communities in Zambia have been decimated by the HIV/AIDS pandemic, leaving 1.2 million orphaned children. Poverty is extreme, with two thirds of the population living on less than $2 a day.
The Butterfly Tree supports rural schools in Zambia. Due to extreme poverty many children only receive one meal per day, therefore it is essential to initiate feeding programs in schools. Some walk up to ten miles each way to seek an education and cannot afford to bring a packed lunch. If seeds are provided the teachers and pupils can grow maize, beans and vegetables in the school garden. This can create sustainability for the school and any surplus produce can be sold to the local community.
The long-term effect will be very beneficial. Producing food will alleviate hunger, which can lead to malnutrition and poor health. By providing children in these rural areas with fresh nutritious vegetables we have seen a substantial difference. Through monitoring and evaluation at the schools we have learnt that attendance improves, concentration is increased and performance is better. The long-term impact is for the benefit of both the children and the schools.