Passionate community beats food insecurity challenges in North West

A small yet passionate farming enterprise in the remote village of Jericho, located about 35km outside of Brits in the North West, established a vegetable garden in 2012 to help feed the poorer members of their local community.

Headed up by Tutu Phalatse, who resigned as an electrician and single handedly started this garden, the Jericho Business Forum Co-Op is made up of eight community members who work in the garden. Soil infertility, however, threatened the viability of their initiative.

As a business with heart, the Shoprite Group partnered with the Jericho Business Forum Co-op earlier this year to establish an effective and sustainable long-term solution. It included providing the team with extensive permaculture training and 3 000 new seedlings. Existing infrastructure was also upgraded by putting up a fence and installing gutters as well as water tanks.

Today this farming enterprise is once again able to support their community by donating fresh produce including butternut, pumpkins, cabbage, tomatoes and onions towards any funerals that take place. Much-needed income is also generated by selling excess veggies at the market and to local vendors.