With nutrition, there can be health. With health there can be enterprise and education.
We educate communities on nutrition and permaculture using sustainable farming to create enterprise and food security. The hungry season each year brings famine to around 35% of the population – approximately 6.7 million in 2017 (World Food Programme). Poor nutrition causes nearly half (45 percent) of deaths in children under five – 3.1 million children each year.
Family Futures Sustainable Farming
An economy dependent on struggling agriculture leaves over half the 18.5m population in poverty. 80% live in rural areas and rely on farming for income and food security. Lack of access to resources forces farmers with their own land to have to work on other farms, trapping them in the poverty cycle due to low wages and high inflation.
A single harvest means that only those with money, or who’ve saved enough from the previous harvest, have food security.
Family futures sustainable farming helps vulnerable families living on less than $1 per day who have 6 or more dependants including orphans or elderly. The program aims to help these family become food secure, provide nutrition for their family and surplus to sell to provide an income for school fees, mosquito nets and essentials for a healthy life. We provide them with farming inputs to farm 1 hectare of land, along with access to adult literacy, teaching, agriculture and business training over two years.
The value of the farm inputs is paid back over two years, with 0% interest. This is then invested in farm inputs for another family in the same community. The program is designed to make family farms self-sustainable through effective management of resources. Families are able to farm their land (many for the first time), and to have excess crops to sell to buy farm inputs for the following year and pay school fees for their children.
The initiative has even been nick-named ‘Nsunga Moyo’ in Chichewa local language, meaning ‘lifesaver’. The scheme has extended to 110 families and will expand year on year.
- 110 families with 676 dependants now have food security.
Meet Lucy Saulosi
At 48 Lucy cares for 6 children and two orphans. She left school in STD 3, and has been working in other people’s fields, being paid in maize, not money so she could feed her children. For 5 months of the year, she was able to find work helping other people harvest their crops and the family was living off less than $0.50 a day.
Thanks to your help with Family futures, her family is now food secure. Her farm estimates show she will have enough in her own harvest (for the first time) to feed every child every single day, even in famine season. She has enough surplus to sell to send her children to school and buy seeds for next year. She will also be able to repay 50% of the interest-free seed loan this year, to be given to another family to start the program, the program keeps on giving.
She has also had access to our adult literacy program helping her to run the business. She can now read and write for the first time and support her children’s learning, even reading a book in English. This knowledge has given her access to high breed maize and fertiliser. The sales of her Soya have enabled 6 children to go to school! What an incredible lady!
School Feeding Programme
37% of under 5’s suffer stunted growth. Stunted growth hinders brain development and immunity. 26% of children are engaged in child labor, varying from season to season. Poor nutrition causes nearly half (45 percent) of deaths in children under five – 3.1 million children each year.
66 million primary school-age children attend classes hungry across the developing world, with 23 million in Africa alone.
Through the school feeding programme, we aim to reduce the number of children that are engaged in child labour, stabilise school attendance, and ensure children are eat at least one meal a day. Children work in the fields in return for food, in some cases, children eat 1 meal in 3 days during hungry season. Attendance would drop from approx 400 to 60, as children would be forced to work in fields to help feed their family, being paid for a days labour with a bowl of maize. Their education suffers, as well as nutrition and health.
Love Support Unite has helped the community to secure 10 acres of farm land, trained its teachers in permaculture and provided the first year of seeds and farm inputs. The school is now feeding an average of 400 meals per day. That’s 65,060 meals to date.
The school feeds the children from its own land, the children learn new farming techniques in the outdoor classroom. The attendance is stable as children attend school to receive food, nutrition, and education. We are working alongside ‘Malawi Schools Permaculture Club’ to keep up to date on training, they provide teacher training and syllabus to get children learning outside. We trained local staff at Kusamala institute of permaculture. With huge thanks to Beating Heart.
- 65.060 meals served
- 600 children in primary education
Food prices rise and climate change leads to yearly food shortages, drought and flooding. Prices increase every year.
LSU aims to help Tilinanu Orphanage become self sustainable and provide food for the girls at the orphanage. Surplus crops are sold to help provide items such as tooth paste, toilet roll and oil.
In 2017, LSU purchased land for Tilinanu Orphanage to make it self-sufficient. By 2018, it was able to provide maize to feed the Tilinanu girls. The project aims to reduce the orphanage’s food bill by 50% by 2021 to enable the orphanage to become self sustainable. Huge thanks to ‘The Malawi Projects’ and NISPA 733 for making this possible.
- 30 Acre food farm built for Tilinanu.
During the ‘hungry season’, some children may eat as little as 1 meal in 3 days. Many children are engaged in hard labor to earn food rather than attend school.
We work with Malawi Permaculture In Schools Club to equip learners with the permaculture lessons. They learn new techniques in both the classroom and the field to provide food for their families in the future. The Club aims to train teachers in nutrition and turn school grounds into permaculture food gardens and with outside classrooms with the children.
- 2 Permaculture Teachers Trained
- 1 outdoor school class room complete