Bereko Garden Group - the start
The major issue for Bereko right now is the changing climate. There has only been enough rain for crops to grow in one of the past four years. In response to this, the elders in Bereko are developing a project that will provide education for local people about alternative farming methods and will raise a profit to fund community projects – such as a new classroom or equipment for one of the two Primary Schools.
The project is called the Bereko Garden Group and the constitution has now been registered with the government, so that it can have its own bank account. Advice and practical support is being provided by a UK charity, Livingstone Tanzania Trust for 2020 and 2021. Members of the Bereko Garden Group include the Bereko Ward Councillor, Chair of the Town Council, Head Teachers from the two primary schools and secondary school plus the individuals who are working now to set up the group.
The previous Town Council Chair has generously donated one acre of his land for ten years to the Bereko Garden Group and the project has now started. The land is ploughed, seeds are being sown and the drip irrigation is being installed. The Bereko Garden Group aims to acheive three crops each year and are carefully considering what to grow, so that the produce goes to market when the prices are best.
Tanks and piping for the drip irrigation system
The first planting will be half an acre of onions, quarter of an acre of cucumbers and a quarter of an acre of tomatoes. These crops have been chosen because they will be ready to harvest when market prices are at their highest.
In April 2019, we arranged and funded a two day visit for seven elders from Bereko to Livingstone Tanzania Trust,to see their community development projects in nearby Babati. We had met them in the UK and in Tanzania and had visited a number of their projects in October 2018. Their work is inspirational and we and the Bereko elders were very encouraged to see what could be done to improve the lives of people in the Bereko community.
The pictures below are from the visit to Livingstone Tanzania projects in April 2019.