• Getting growing: developing a sustainable vegetable garden

    Getting growing: developing a sustainable vegetable garden

    Sometimes, a small project can make a huge difference to people’s lives. CGV and the Trocano Araretama REDD+ Project are currently in the early stages of developing a sustainable vegetable garden for a family in the Boa Esperança community, which will act as a pilot project for similar gardens throughout other local communities. We’re always on the lookout for new ideas to generate benefits within the REDD+ framework, seeing how we can best improve the lives of local communities whilst promoting sustainable living and continuing to prevent deforestation.

    Devastated by flooding

    For most of us, a vegetable garden is only a hobby, but for Roberval and Cleonice, a couple who live in the Trocano project area, their small planting patch was their main source of family income. This was until unprecedented floods hit Borba in 2014. Houses were destroyed, infrastructure damaged, and Roberval and Cleonice’s garden was washed away. Not only were their crops destroyed, the garden was left unusable, as the soil had been saturated with silt and sand.

    Assessing the area for the garden

    Planning for a sustainable future

    As part of a trip to inspect our latest Acquabox project, Iakira President Director José Rocha (“Goiano”) last week travelled to the Boa Esperança community where the couple live, in order to start making plans for the new vegetable garden. Whilst this is still in the early stages, Goiano identified a suitable site that is not at risk from future flooding. Plans include replanting the original crops of lettuce, cabbage, chives and others, and using this garden as a pilot project for others around the Trocano area.

    By providing a sustainable location for agriculture, these gardens could help continue to avoid deforestation of the area, and as a secure source of food and income they could improve the lives of the local communities. Other suggestions for this first garden include rebuilding the growing shed, and possibly including an irrigation system to make the work less labour-intensive.

    This project is still being developed, with CGV and Iakira collaborating to ensure that all measures are in place to make it as successful as possible. So watch this space!

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    Kate Hawkes

    Marketing Assistant with Celestial Green Ventures since May 2015. Background in English Literature, charity marketing and volunteering, most recently with a wildlife rescue centre in Indonesia.

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