Palms for Life Fund Botswana (PFL) in partnership with Green Gem signed a Partnership Agreement for a Project to establish functional hydroponics units in Remote Area Communities in Botswana on December 14, 2021.
The Project will strengthen food security, income-generating opportunities and skills development for Remote Area Dwellers. It will be developed in collaboration between PFL, Government Ministries and Green Gem. During this phase, the Project will target 10 RACs and will be supported by the appropriate regional entities in Central, Ghanzi, Southern and Kweneng Districts covering the following villages; Malatswai, Sehunuo, Kedia, Khwee, Otse, Mokgenene, Manxotae, New Xade, Kgomodiatshaba and Kuke.
Palms for Life is a not-for-profit entity whose mission is to improve access to education, food, water and sanitation for vulnerable communities, using a human rights approach. Green Gem, a horticultural farm and landscaping business based in Gaborone, will act as a “Service Provider” for this Project and will build, install and train relevant RAC entities on the management and maintenance of the units, seeking long term sustainability.
Most RACs in Botswana require technical and human investment to improve local access to food. In line with the Botswana Vision 2036 Pillar on Human and Social Development, this Project will introduce resource-efficient methods for growing healthy food in RACs, particularly using hydroponic agriculture, a Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA). With Project support and funding during a period of 12 months, Green Gem will deploy staff and transfer essential hydroponic technical skills, and basic business management skills, enabling new, sustainable food supplies in RACs. Green Gem will receive funding from Palms for Life amounting to P1,991,656.00 for the running of the project.
The signing ceremony was attended by representatives from the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, Ministry of Food Security and Agricultural Development and Local Enterprise Authority including staff from Palms for Life and Green Gem. Mr Raymond Matsake, CEO of Green Gm welcomed guests to the event and gave a brief account of how the partnership between Palms for Life and Green Gem will benefit the people living in RACs. Palms for Life National Coordinator Ms Dorothy Okatch also gave an account of Palms for Life’s work especially Projects that the organisation will be running in Botswana. The event was graced by Mr. Berzack Maphakwane, the Private Secretary to the Minister of Local Government who thanked Palms for Life on behalf of the Government for the hydroponics initiative which will go a long way in promoting community development, healthy living and food security among Remote Areas Communities.