This season the orphanage and school harvested three fields of corn and two fields of mixed herbs and vegetables! This provided the opportunity for the children to learn how to farm and participate in hydroponics. All of the children were able to eat healthier meals and include fruits and vegetables with every serving. This crop harvest also cut a huge cost for the orphanage! They were able to import much less fruits and vegetables from Columbia, which was one of their biggest expenses!
What challenges did or does your project face?
A big challenge this season was the lack of rain and staff. We have three staff who work on tending the crops throughout the season, however due to the large amount of land we are growing produce on, it can be hard for them to weed and water all of the space daily. They also did not have a water source near their fields, the gardeners have to travel up and down a large hill to get water to the fields.
How are you working to overcome them?
We are currently raising money for a well. We have located an area near the field that we can hire an individual to dig an artisan well that will eliminate the lack of water! Along with the well, we are actively writing grants and awaiting our 501(c)(3) in order to hire more staff.
What did you or your project learn this season that might be useful to others as well?
Our project learned that it is important to explore the resources available to you. After exploring in the fields we found an area that in the past, was a well. We were able to change our funding to updating that well to be useable again. This cut the expense that we are raising drastically, and helped us provide funding for more seeds!