The Permafund team has received a positive mid-term progress report from the Kiini Sustainable Initiative based in Nyeri, Kenya. Following their receipt of an AU$2,000 micro grant in 2018, they’ve reported that the overall project is progressing well in terms of accomplishing their objectives and adhering to their February to November 2019 timeline.
In a community where farmland and the environment have been degraded and natural resources like rainwater are being under-utilised, the project has aimed to encourage the wise use of resources to improve community food security and overall productivity.
Deforestation, over-cultivation of farmland, loss of topsoil through water and wind erosion, indiscriminate use of insecticides and inorganic fertilisers, loss of biodiversity and pollinators have inspired the Kiini Sustainable Initiative to introduce permaculture education and activities as tools for change.
Through education about permaculture principles the Initiative’s goal is to inspire attitude change and transformative thinking in the community to better use their natural and human resources to: –
- harvest water and improve water quality
- improve land management practices
- reduce erosion
- increasing biodiversity and
- restore the environment
On site permaculture solutions have included the installation of water tanks on homes to harvest roof run-off for domestic use and irrigation of food crops, construction of a simple water recycling system including grey water collection and terracing to slow erosion allow improvement of the soil.
At the Nyeri Farm View Academy children are learning about permaculture through the creation of a kitchen garden assisted by teachers, parents and the community. Other schools in the area are interested in the project which could expand if more funding support becomes available.
The Kiini Sustainable Initiative is optimistic the project will achieve its objectives despite the challenges of drought conditions, the proliferation of pests due to the high temperatures and the slow adoption of permaculture principles among some community members.
Donations, tithes and pledges to Permafund are assisting projects like this overseas and in Australia. Donations of $2.00 and over are tax deductible and a recurring donation facility is available on the Permaculture Australia website.