Home Community Congratulations to i-MED Africa Health-e-Gardens students from Euxolweni

Congratulations to i-MED Africa Health-e-Gardens students from Euxolweni

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Health, poverty, and unemployment in our communities are a rising concern for the non-profit organisation, i-MED Africa.  The organisation was founded to educate informal settlement communities in the Overstrand on health topics.  The health training also includes modules on healthy eating, the importance of nutrition and the use of herbal remedies.  i-MED Africa realised we can’t only educate on these topics if the students don’t have access to nutritional food and herbs, the knowledge can’t be practised.  The Health-e-Garden project sprouted from here and i-MED Africa expanded the training they offer to include an agriculture program in Eluxolweni.

Eluxolweni was identified to be the first community where the agriculture program will be implemented at the beginning of 2022.  Eluxolweni have limited access to shops to buy fresh produce at good prices due to their location and soaring fuel prices make it even more expensive to pay for transport to buy produce at bigger supermarkets. 

The economic downturn has impacted communities such as Eluxolweni, with growing unemployment and high levels of food insecurity.  With the Health-e-Garden Project, i-MED Africa hope to make a change in this community.  The agriculture training is specifically focused on home gardens in townships which experience challenges such as lack of spaces, fertile soil, water, and knowledge. 

35 unemployed community members registered for the training, which took place twice a week over 4 months and included theory and practical classes to learn all the aspects from preparing a home garden to harvest and maintenance.  Not all 35 students graduated some found a job, others re-located, and others just didn’t make it.

A group of 21 students received their certificates on Wednesday, 1 June 2022 in the Community Hall, Eluxolweni.  The hard-working and enthusiastic students were part of phase 1 in i-MED Africa’s Health-e-Gardens Project.  Gretha Hanekom, Managing Director, welcomed everyone and explained the purpose of the event.  Zokhanya Bikani, the Agriculture Training Facilitator, did the hand-over of the certificates.  “I am emotional about the results, and we only want to grow bigger to be a community to be proud of,” she said.  Mr Kat Myburgh from Gansbaai Municipality were also on the stage to congratulate each student.  “This is a long outstanding dream of Gretha and Zokhanya,” Mr Myburgh said.

 

It was a special occasion with the students sitting at neatly decorated tables.  Zokhanya said the whole idea of the project is to “empower ourselves”.  The graduation event was planned by the students and the food was prepared by the students out of the community garden combined with a cooking/nutrition workshop by Nosabatha Ndlolo, the Health training Facilitator.  The celebrations carried on after the formalities around the chicken braai in real South African style around the fire. 

i-Med Africa expressed a thank you to all stakeholders involved.  “The Health-e-Garden Project is funded by the South African National Lotteries Commission and without the substantial financial contribution towards this project this event today would not be possible. We would also like to thank Mr Myburg and the Overstrand Municipality that shared our vision and without their help, the implementation of this project would’ve been impossible. 

 

This is not the end for Eluxolweni, only the beginning, especially for the top 10 selected students that will have the opportunity to take part in phase 2 of the project.  Follow i-MED Africa’s social media platforms for sneak peeks of what’s coming up, let’s think entrepreneurship.

i-MED Africa is a non-profit organisation registered as a public benefit organisation (PBO) relying on funding to operate within the Overstrand.  Current projects for 2022/2023 operating in Masakhane, Stanford, De-Kop, Blompark and Eluxolweni, we invite local companies and individuals to email Gretha Hanekom, Managing Director at gretha@imed.ngo for more details on all of our programs and opportunities to get involved.

Hardus Botha

 

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