MAZOWE, HARARE – The Zimbabwe Farm Project is a food aid and employment project incorporated in the United States as a non-profit charitable organization. Our mission is to provide invaluable services and support to people living in a rural farming community, by promoting self-sufficiency versus dependency. Since the program’s inception at the end of 2015, quarterly oversight trips from the U.S. to Zimbabwe have been taken to ensure that the Zimbabwe Farm Project’s program goals are being met in compliance with the food aid mission.
Day-to-day oversight is handled in country and through partnerships with Zimbabwean citizens who provide on-site management. At start-up, a more hands-on approach was required with active involvement and oversight, which now gradually has evolved to incorporate more community participation in this rewarding and beneficial project of mutual giving.
As a daughter of Africa, it was most important for me to honor my father’s legacy after his recent passing in Zimbabwe. He maintained dual citizenship in the United States and in Christon Bank, Zimbabwe, for nearly 40 years. My father was a Pan-Africanist who believed in, and worked for Africa’s empowerment and self-determination. He believed that as Africans, it was incumbent upon us to improve our lives and strengthen our countries without dependency upon outside governments.
An initial property survey, financed from my personal funds as an IT consultant, revealed viable orange, lemon, and grapefruit trees; pecan and macadamia nut trees; apricot, peach, avocado, and guava trees; and mango, papaya, and banana trees. There is a borehole and windmill which has since been retrofitted, and an electrical submersible pump has been installed to provide water and irrigation for the farm.
However, it will take considerably more resources to transform the project into a major agricultural producer capable of mediating some of the food insecurity and also injecting capital into the local economy by hiring full-time employees, contractors, and day laborers to complete the various required tasks necessary to bring the project to fruition. Our non-profit status ensures that all the money received from donations are utilized in furtherance of our mission.
As the scope of the project has expanded, so has the mission to provide sustained support for the families living in this community through stable employment, food security from farm produce, sanitation and hygiene, a clean water initiative, hydroponic farming, and renewable energy solutions such as solar power. As a social entrepreneur, I believe the Zimbabwe Farm Project can implement solutions for some of the challenges which beset this economically depressed community. Thus far, the Zimbabwe Farm Project has already realized a return on our investments that have exceeded our first-year replicability goals. Milestones and project updates are chronicled and documented in 4K Videos.
This project has two guiding principles capture in quotes by Mark LaMoure, “Everything big, once started little…..” and Mahatma Ghandi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”