By AFRICA KA MAHAMBA
YOUTH DAY was commemorating in style in Soshanguve when Ma-2000 turn an illegal dumping site into a food garden in Block H Soshanguve. The Gauteng MEC for Agriculture, Environment and Rural Development, Morakane Mosupye has started working with Botshabelo Black Farmers Development (BBFD) which is leading the farming project to make it a success.
The MEC said the initiative which is again aimed at building the rural and township economy, is part of measures to fight against food insecurity amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.
“With Botshabelo Black Farmer Development we decided that we are going to commemorate June 16 in a different way, in a practical way. In addition to what we were doing by developing backyard farming, there is this group of young people who called themselves Help a Friend Out Organisation.
“This is very exciting, I hope you will have the patient and passion because you will meet lots of challenges and some of the challenges are natural like climate change.
“We have six farming projects started by youth in Gauteng areas like West Rand, Sedibeng, Ekurhuleni and Tshwane. I not happy with the number of youth in farming, but it is our responsibility to show them farming is a business that can create jobs. We need more young people into farming,” said Mosupye.
David Thathane of Botshabelo Black Farmer Development said they are bringing farming back to the people.
“We are bringing farming back to the people; we are 8 commercial farmers that we have partnered with them.
“ We have helped more than 80 families to have backyard gardens in their homes which are 60 in Soshanguve, 23 in Mamelodi, 5 in Mabopane and there are 30 which in Ga-Rankuwa which have been identified starting from next month”, said Thathane.
Oreneile Matjene of the Help a Friend Out Organisation an organisation founded and consisting of Ma-2000 said they are happy with the support they are getting from Botshabelo Black Farmer Development and the office of the MEC for Agriculture.
“We are happy with the support we are getting from Help a Friend Out Organisation and the office of the MEC. Our aim is to turn more illegal dumping site into food gardening, at least four for this year alone.
“We need food gardening for a period like this, it will help with food security and to fight poverty,” said Matjene.