Giving is a Gift

Today PAF went back to our roots. Wesley has been out in the surrounding villages to hand out some plants to people in need.

And I know it doesn’t sound like much, but due to severe drought people struggle to plant enough maize and veggies to even feed themselves and provide for their families. Especially for old and disabled people it has become mere impossible to do farming nowadays.

So please meet 3 of those people whose faces showed a smile today after Wesley visited them:

Banene Naomi

Banene Naomi was born in 1920, so she turned 99 years. For many years Naomi took care of orphans in her house and yard. Even now she takes care of a boy called Alfred. Wow! What a woman. 😊

As you can imagine garden work and farming don’t come easy for her. She recieved Moringa, rape veggie, onions and tomato today, plus 2 sacks of organic material. Those sacks are filled with ant hill soil, top layer soil, chicken drops or goat manure. Up till now she only could plant and harvest a little bit of maize.

You wonder why we handed out the veggies and onions in 2 sacks? Well…It is more flexible and they can easily move it around. Of course Wesley made sure that there is a portable protective fence around the sacks. To water the plans in the easiest way that doesn’t involve too much work we installed an old water bottle for drip irrigation. Smart, huh?

… And Mary and her daughter Maluba

Mary is not able to work in her garden these days and so most of the work has to be done by little Maluba and some people who help her. Those two recieved Moringa plants and 2 sacks of organic material just like Banene Naomi got.

Growing Moringa will add valuable nutrients to their diet and meals. They will be able to harvest in a few months already because moringa grows very fast around Chinkonono.

Well… Let’s keep this up! Doing small things like that does not take much, but it has as huge impact on people’s lives.

Go PAF! Love without boarders!

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Giving is a Gift

The Kitchen Garden Concept

While most of us, on Easter Sunday, probably spent the day resting our members started a new project at PAF Center: the kitchen garden.

The plan is to raise a small, yet intensive patch comprising of vegetables, tomatoes, onions, chillies, beans and maize.

The aim is to educate our members and villagers to on how to grow enough relish and food for the kitchen on a small scale, organically and with minimal water usage.

As you can see Effeso, Smith anf Lloyd were preparing the soil for planting and watering.

We will update you on the progress soon πŸ™‚

The Kitchen Garden Concept

Cabbage Big Style

You already know that maize and tomato are 2 of the core ingredients of the majority of Zambian and sub-saharan African meals. But we also have to add cabbage to that list. It is full of nutrients and keeps the belly full for a long time.

Of course our villagers and PAF members in Chinkonono are growing cabbage for their own use. But our member Raphael is doing it big style. He has a huge cabbage garden and is growing it for his family’s consumption and for sale.

But Raphael doesn’t only grow cabbage. In his garden you will also find onion, egg plant and tomato.

We say: well done! But take a look!

 

On a side note…Lloyd is also trying other good foods πŸ˜‰

banana
“Which one should I eat first?” πŸ˜‰
Cabbage Big Style

Ta Te Ti Tomato

Since we moved our PAF garden closer to PAF Center it is much easier to grow veggies. People work hard to make sure they supply their families and the village with veggies. This season we focus on tomatoes. Besides cabbage tomatoes are among the most important and popular ibgredients in Zambian cuisine. So it only makes sense to grow a larger quantity of them at our PAF garden.

Unfortunately it doesn’t come that easy. With dry season around it is very difficult to water the plants. Mostly women have to carry buckets and buckets and buckets from the river or a well to water the plants. Not even mentioning the actual gardening work. You get the picture…

But just a few days ago all the work started to pay off and the first harvest could be brought in. What a joy πŸ™‚

Of course we have to face the fact we cannot conserve tonatoes properly. But we are trying new methods to keep them longer. One of them is to keep ashes from cooking and put the fresh tomatoes in a box with cold ashes and store them away in a dry and cool place. Let’s hope it works out!

Ta Te Ti Tomato

Milling around the clock

Not long ago we happily announced the purchase of our newΒ hammer mill. And apparently word about it spread like wildfire in the neighbouring villages. Everyday people from different villages, more or less far away, come to Chinkonono to get their maize milled. They literally line up at PAF Center.

 

At the moment we still keep the mill under a temporary shelter made of wood. But the actual building we construct to keep the mill safe will be done soon.

We also found a 20-year-old strong man who will be our PAF miller. His job is to coordinate the usage of the mill and do the milling for people who bring their maize. Also he is responsible to keep the mill safe and working. Now meet our Steven:

mill2
this young man is our PAF miller: Steven

 

So as you can see our mill is milling basically around the clock. That is good for PAF because we can raise some funds for our upcoming and running projects. But mainly we are focused on making life easier for our villagers and the people of the Chinkonono region.

 

Stay tuned for more updates on what is going on in Chinkonono. There are still big things planned…

 

Milling around the clock

PAF Vegetable Garden

As you probably remember we moved our greenhouses to PAF Center a while ago. This turned out to be very convenient for everyone.

Now we decided to try again with a vegetable garden. So we are now planting our veggies and fixing the shade net to our garden. This has been long in the making and is bearing fruit as all materials are available.

 

But don’t think all this has been easy. We used some of the money that PAF raised through donations and the annual fees of our supporting members to buy what was missing. But getting the materials from A to B to Chinkonono was a bit of a struggle. Some of those huge poles had to travel for more than 15km on an ox cart. Hard work.

We are using this project to educate members on effective vegetable farming and flower gardening. Kids and youths from Chinkonono can come to PAF Center and learn how to plant and take care of different types of seedlings and also when and how to harvest and re-plant.

 

Also the garden will be used as a means to raise funds by selling our products at PAF Market. We are planting cabbage, onions, sugar loaf, tomatoes and many other vegetables suitable for the climate and which can be consumed by local people.

PAF Vegetable Garden

Vinkubala, a Zambian Snack

People these days go crazy about healthy and organic food or superfood. All that for the “western world” is very expensive while in places like Chinkonono it is so easy to get.

One of our coordinators, Wesley (Lloyd’s brother), has sent some pics and info about one of the village’s favourite snacks: Vinkubala…caterpillars.

Caterpillar5
Lots of yummy colourful caterpillars…a healthy snack

What? Yeah..caterpillars. What sounds like the most stereotype thing to say about Africa is actually a very, very healthy part of PAF members’ diet.

In Chinkonono those caterpillars are called Vinkubala. Wesley set out to catch them to bring home a surprise for his family for New Years Day.

As you can see the kids went crazy about them.

Caterpillar2
Digging in

 

Those caterpillars can be found in some trees in the field around December and January. It is mostly a popular relish or snack around Southern Region.

Vinkubala provide the body with a lot of proteins, vitamines and many more nutrients. That is why during the 2 months people try to eat as many as they can. They are a valuable and important addition to the regular diet. Even the Zambian government recommends eating caterpillars.

As you can imagine, thinking of caterpillars, most kids at first are a bit hesitant and even scream when they see or touch them for the first time. But on the other hand they are more than eager to have them.

 

How to eat vinkubala, you ask? Well…obviously you put them in a dish and kids will try sort out the biggest ones for themselves first. πŸ˜‰ Then you have to get the outer shell off and remove the insides. Apply some salt, let them sit there for a few hours or a day. Then they are ready to be fried or cooked. You can add any ingredients you see fit.

Caterpillar4
Yummy?! πŸ˜‰

Would you eat them? πŸ˜‰

 

Vinkubala, a Zambian Snack