A Story of Hope
Written by Plant With Purpose on December 1, 2009 in General
In honor of December 1st, World AIDs Day, we want to recognize the importance of holistic solutions to poverty that work together for every individual involved, including those struggling with HIV. Today’s blog is about Leni, a Tanzanian woman who perserveres to provide for her family.
Plant With Purpose’s mission is to transform the lives of the rural poor by providing environmental solutions to humanitarian problems. As most of you know, we teach sustainable agriculture techniques that restore damaged land, improve farm yields and increase incomes. As a result, the vicious cycle of poverty and environmental damage is replaced with a cycle of health and hope.
Healthy soil is one of the keys to higher yields. It’s true here in the US and true in the third world. One of the things that I truly enjoy about working with Plant With Purpose is discovering new ways in which our work overseas “crosses over” to home gardening and organic agricultural techniques here in the U.S. I discovered one of these recently in Tanzania in the shape of the “Bag Garden-“ (pictured above). There are lots of cool things about the bag garden. It allows you to grow a lot of vegetables in a small space, it saves water, keeps pests away and lasts about 4 years.
For Plant With Purpose’s farmers in Tanzania, the bag garden does all of this and more- it also provides an additional source of income, as extra vegetables can be sold in the local market and provide much needed funds for school fees and books, medical bills and other necessities.
In the case of Leni, pictured here with one of her bag gardens, the bag garden is one of the things literally saving her life. Leni is living with AIDS. Abandoned by the husband who infected her and ostracized by her community, she is nevertheless bravely continuing to raise her children. Government-provided drugs are controlling the disease, but for lasting improvement in her health, medicine must go hand in hand with improved nutrition. That’s where the bag garden comes in. Since starting to work with Plant With Purpose, Leni has put on almost 30 pounds and has hope for the future.
Article written by Doug Satre
As Director of Outreach Development, Doug Satre is responsible for overseeing Plant With Purpose’s fundraising and marketing efforts, working with the Plant With Purpose staff, donors and foundations to build awareness and financial support of Plant With Purpose’s work to transform the lives of the rural poor.