A major topic in Gambia is the continuous supply of the local population with food with 40 % of the people having a poor inadequate diet. The country is hit by long periods of drought making it impossible to grow crops such as vegetables, fruit and rice without any regular water supply.
Besides the money for seeds and fencing in order to protect the agricultural products from animals (e.g. goats, rabbits…) is often not affordable. The tropical climate instead offers the possibility of several harvests a year.
That’s why we decided to start our voluntary work with an agricultural project. With it interested and in Gambia often disadvantaged women should get the chance to cultivate their own piece of land and thus feed their families in a healthy way. Furthermore spare products could then be sold on local markets to receive a certain income.
For this project a common village property will be flattened, fenced and distributed among the women. Every woman gets her own vegetable garden and is hence responsible for it. Building wells
guarantees a reliable water supply. Seeds are also provided. Within the first month the women are taught and supported by the Gambian Department of Agriculture. In the long run this is meant to help the women to help themselves.
Our work is based on the collaboration of the village population, so that they are actively involved in the planning and implementation of the project. This way ideas and criticism can be considered.
Since poverty is the greatest and the chance of improvement without support is the least in Gambia’s interior, we planned the project together with the village people in N`Gien-Beretto. This small village is located in the district North Bank Region about three kilometres away from Farafenni. Together with the local population a community owned piece of land (120m x 120m) was chosen.
Together with the employees of the Department of Agriculture and some village people ground samples were taken and the further procedure was planned.
We are happy to work together with the highly motivated and open-minded population of N`Gien-Beretto and to offer the so far 29 dedicated women this chance of improvement.