A family spends time at a community garden in Ecuador. Photo by Timo Selvaraj.
In Ecuador, many families live in rural areas that are primarily dependent on agriculture. Although some farmers have the means to grow a variety of crops to provide food for their families, most families in rural Ecuador rely on small gardens as a means of survival. Some only grow one crop, such as corn, so they have to buy food for their own tables. Our new gardening initiative will help families grow a variety of vegetables so they'll have the proper mix of nutrients and perhaps have a large enough yield to sell extra crops in the marketplace.
Seeds of Prosperity
ChildFund's vegetable garden initiative will benefit more than 200 families, 750 children and 500 youths across Ecuador. Offering rural families a source of income as well as the means to grow their own food, these vegetable gardens will provide an invaluable lifeline to families in Ecuador's poorest communities. As malnutrition is one of the leading causes of childhood disease in developing countries, ensuring a family has enough healthy, nutritious vegetables will also help children grow up to be healthy adults.
Although ChildFund aims to provide families in Ecuador with their own vegetable gardens, our mission is also to empower communities through education. We will provide recipients of vegetable gardens with the training and support they need to better understand crop production and the marketing of fresh produce. Not only will this enable families to serve their children more nutritious meals, it will help them sell their excess produce at a fair price. In some cases, a vegetable garden could increase a family's household income by as much as 30 percent.
A Lasting Impact
Our goal is to raise $43,000 to provide 200 families with their own vegetable gardens by August 2013. Although ChildFund has worked in Ecuador for almost 30 years, we would not be able to help as many people without the kindness of our donors. If you want to make a difference in the lives of families in rural Ecuador, please consider making a donation to the vegetable garden initiative and help people help themselves.