Goal #3: Sustainable Gardening
Impacting lives through Eco-friendly cultivation practices
“Through sustainable gardening practices, orphanages cultivate not only nourishing gardens but also hope, resilience, and a profound connection to nature, empowering orphaned children with the knowledge and skills to sustainably feed themselves, heal the Earth, and create a greener future.”
Jean Luc Kouyoumji
Board Member, Mary K. Yap Foundation
The Foundation’s sustainable gardening initiative allows orphanages to produce nutritious food, reducing dependency on external sources. By growing fruits, vegetables, and herbs on-site, orphanages can ensure a steady supply of fresh, organic produce. This cultivation practice improves the nutritional quality of meals and promotes a healthy lifestyle for the children under their care. Moreover, sustainable Gardening minimizes the environmental impact by avoiding harmful pesticides and synthetic fertilizers, thus preserving soil health and promoting biodiversity.
Our team of agro experts works with orphanages to adopt sustainable gardening practices to be resourceful and also for them to instill valuable life skills and knowledge in orphaned children. By actively participating in gardening activities, they learn about plant life cycles, environmental stewardship, and the interconnectedness of ecosystems. These experiences foster a sense of responsibility, resourcefulness, and self-reliance.
Below are some significant advantages that have surfaced through our committed endeavors and the amplified positive effects of our Sustainable Gardening initiatives on these orphanages, yielding impactful benefits beyond the gains from the gardens themselves.
When it comes to orphanages, the positive impact of our Food Program has been profound, bringing about transformative changes and yielding a range of significant advantages. We have witnessed remarkable outcomes that extend beyond immediate sustenance by addressing Hunger within these orphanages. Here are some key impactful benefits that have emerged as a result of our dedicated efforts and the positive effects that amplify our Food Program on these orphanages:
Food Security: Sustainable Gardening allows orphanages to produce fresh and nutritious food. By growing fruits, vegetables, and herbs, orphanages can supplement their food supply, ensuring a consistent source of healthy and organic produce. This promotes food security, reduces dependence on external sources, and improves the overall nutritional quality of meals.
Cost Savings: Growing food on-site through sustainable Gardening can lead to significant cost savings for orphanages. By reducing the need to purchase produce, orphanages can allocate their resources more efficiently, allowing them to invest in other essential areas such as education, healthcare, and infrastructure.
Environmental Stewardship: Sustainable gardening practices prioritize ecological sustainability. By adopting organic and regenerative farming methods, orphanages can reduce their environmental footprint. These practices promote soil health, conserve water, minimize chemical pesticide and fertilizer use, and support biodiversity. Orphanages can become examples of ecological stewardship and teach children the importance of caring for the planet.
- Educational Opportunities: Sustainable Gardening provides a hands-on and engaging educational experience for orphaned children. They can learn about plant life cycles, ecological relationships, and sustainable farming practices. Gardening fosters curiosity, scientific inquiry, and a deeper understanding of the natural world. Children can gain practical knowledge about gardening techniques, composting, and permaculture, equipping them with valuable life skills.
- Therapeutic Benefits: Gardening benefits orphaned children by offering them a nurturing and healing environment. Working in the garden can reduce stress, anxiety, and depression while promoting relaxation and a sense of accomplishment. Gardening also encourages physical activity and outdoor engagement, supporting overall well-being and mental health.
- Sense of Responsibility and Ownership: Involving orphaned children in sustainable Gardening fosters a sense of responsibility and ownership. They can take pride in caring for plants, watching them grow, and contributing to the garden’s success. This cultivates a sense of empowerment, self-esteem, and the understanding that their actions can positively impact their environment.
- Community Building: Sustainable Gardening can bring orphaned children together, promoting teamwork, collaboration, and community. Children can work cooperatively, share responsibilities, and learn the value of collective effort. Gardening can also provide intergenerational interactions involving volunteers or community members, further strengthening bonds and social connections.
- Beautification and Aesthetics: Gardens enhance the visual appeal of orphanage grounds, creating a welcoming and aesthetically pleasing environment. Beautiful gardens can uplift spirits, provide a sense of tranquility, and improve the overall ambiance of the orphanage. They can also serve as spaces for relaxation, recreation, and outdoor activities.
- Sustainable Skills and Entrepreneurship: Sustainable Gardening can teach orphaned children valuable skills that can be applied beyond the orphanage setting. They can learn about sustainable agriculture, organic farming, marketing, and entrepreneurship. These skills can empower them to pursue careers in the agricultural sector, start their gardening initiatives, or contribute to sustainable development in their communities.
- Connection with Nature: Sustainable Gardening reconnects orphaned children with nature, allowing them to appreciate its beauty, resilience, and interconnectedness. It offers an opportunity to develop a sense of wonder, curiosity, and environmental consciousness. Connecting with nature has promoted well-being, environmental awareness, and a lifelong connection with the natural world.
Embracing sustainable gardening practices enables orphanages to harness the power of nature, promote self-sufficiency, and equip orphaned children with essential life skills. By nurturing their food sources and being resourceful, our Foundation is committed to introducing our gardening concepts so that orphanages can create a sustainable and nurturing environment that benefits the children and the planet.
The United Nations (UN) does not have a specific plan that mandates sustainable gardening practices for orphanages; However, it supports and promotes sustainable development goals and initiatives encompassing various aspects of agriculture, food security, and environmental sustainability.
The UN recognizes the importance of sustainable agriculture and the need to ensure access to nutritious food for all, including vulnerable populations such as orphanages. The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly Goal 2: Zero Hunger, emphasize the importance of promoting sustainable agriculture, ensuring food security, and supporting small-scale farmers. These goals aim to eradicate Hunger and achieve sustainable food systems worldwide.
The Mary K. Yap Foundation’s sustainable development agenda aligns with the UN’s broader goals set by its Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) for promoting sustainable food production and supporting initiatives that can supplement food supplies, community gardening, urban farming, and food security for vulnerable populations in a sustainable and environmentally friendly manner. These efforts contribute to building resilient food systems and improving access to nutritious food for all, including orphanages.