Food insecurity in Namibia has dramatically increased, and hundreds of thousands of people in vulnerable communities need help. Vegetable gardening is an important method of securing a sustainable supply of nutritious food for a majority of communities, supported by organisations that Capricorn Group has partnered with through the Capricorn Foundation.
Capricorn Group initiated a Green Week between Monday, 30 August and Thursday, 2 September 2021, where employees in their role as Changemakers, visited four different community projects in and around the informal settlements of Windhoek. The employees were on a mission to help improve the livelihoods of the communities and create sustainable green produce, by establishing vegetable gardens and tending to existing gardens.
Almost 50 Capricorn Group Changemakers volunteered their afternoons this week, putting in hours of shifts, with different enthusiastic teams arriving every day in these communities.
They got their hands dirty, digging and preparing the soil, planting various seeds including leafy spinach, cabbage, tomatoes, onions, carrots, beetroot and potatoes, whilst creating fun garden signs and engaging with the community members.
The community projects that were visited by the Capricorn Group Changemakers included Sofia’s Soup Kitchen and Otjomuise Primary School, identified by community outreach partner Imago Dei, and S.P.E.S (Step out of Poverty through Education, Encouragement and Support) supported pre-primary school.
Throughout all visits to the respective projects, the project coordinators echoed the same concern that unemployment is on the rise, which also means an increase in poverty and food insecurity.
“One thing I know for sure is that this garden will put a smile on the children’s faces. Soon, the children will look forward to a multi-nutrient plate of food produced from our own garden. Thank you Capricorn Group.” said Awie Saal, principal of Otjomuise Primary School.
“As Capricorn Group employees, we continuously look for opportunities to make a positive difference in our communities and ensure a lasting and sustainable impact. Our Changemaker Green Week initiative directly addresses the Harambee Prosperity Plan’s Social Progression pillar to create sustainable food security for Namibians,” said Marlize Horn, Capricorn group executive: brand & corporate affairs.
Some of the organisations assisted are also hoping to start creating a source of revenue from the sale of vegetables to support their community.