Chinese cabbage grows in bamboo strips in a CFCA organic gardening initiative in the Philippines.
Rapid urbanization has brought many problems, including garbage, malnutrition, poverty and food insecurity.
CFCA helps secure food for sponsored friends and their families while encouraging them to develop creative, sustainable solutions.
Mavic Ihap, Quezon project coordinator in the Philippines, describes how parents of sponsored children are cultivating vegetable gardens in a Caloocan City neighborhood.
As the CFCA project encourages families to act on their own development, our parents of sponsored children initiated a food security project, believing that cultivating their own crops is a better way of securing food for their families.
One of the identified issues in their community is rapid urbanization.
In the city people can seldom obtain fresh vegetables because most of it comes from distant provinces, which contributes to its high cost.
Parents of CFCA sponsored children in their communal garden.
Through their regular small-group meetings, parents eventually came up with the idea of vegetable gardening.
They coordinated with the city’s agriculture unit for free seedlings when they started the project in January 2011.
Beyond saving time and money, they can now provide their families a delicious and nutritious menu from the fresh vegetables just outside their doorsteps.
For households with no space to plant, they used bamboo strips, plastic containers, tin cans, old pots and rice sacks.
The gardens are a way of advocating environmental awareness within the community. They help “green” the city and reduce air pollution.
It can also reduce garbage as they recycle non-biodegradable containers, kitchen scraps and anything that decays, which can serve as organic fertilizer.
Jenny, mother of CFCA sponsored children Shailyn and Shaira, harvests cauliflower.
Aside from household vegetable gardens, the project also includes communal gardening.
Extra produce from the communal vegetable garden is sold around the neighborhood, helping replenish the group’s fund.
This is a result of the project’s continuous community empowerment as we journey toward realizing the Hope for a Family program values.
This initiative formed as a result of CFCA PamBuhay groups, where parents of sponsored children work together to identify and resolve important issues in their communities. You can learn more about PamBuhays in this story.