Namibia: EIF Assists Oshana Gardeners

THE Environmental Investment Fund (EIF) of Namibia has pumped in N$150 000 to help three young women and a man from Oshana region make their small backyard gardens prosper.

In August last year, The Namibian reported on the plight of Rosalia Amupolo, Eveline Amesho and Hilja Shigwedha who had set up gardens at their homesteads at Oniimwandi village to generate income and contribute towards food nutrition.

The women faced challenges of lack of drip irrigation equipment, shade nets, water tanks, and fertilisers and appealed for assistance.

EIF contacted them for a needs assessment, which was conducted with officials from the Agro-Marketing and Trade Agency Oshana region.

The team agreed that the three women needed assistance.

Last month EIF provided funds to expand the gardens, set up water tanks, instal drip irrigation equipment, a nursery, and provide poles and mesh for the fences.

EIF contracted consultant Shetuuka ya Shetuuka to help the three women plant tomatoes, sweet potatoes, maize, onions and spinach.

"We are happy with what EIF has done for us," said Amesho, who used to water her garden with a bucket - a tiring and time-consuming feat.

Amupolo said the EIF assistance was a huge incentive for them to work harder.

The women mainly grow spinach, egg-plant, beetroots, butternuts, lettuce, cabbage, carrots, green pepper, tomatoes, onions and chillies.

"I have set up similar gardens for many people in the country and they have prospered," said Shetuuka.

This month, EIF head of communications and corporate services, Lot Ndamanomhata visited the three gardens to see the progress.

Ndamanomhata told The Namibian that EIF funding from the Green Climate Fund (GCF) stipulates gender equality when assisting communities with projects contributing to environmental sustainability and food production in the face of a changing climate.

He said apart from assisting the three women, Ileni Nandjato from Omaalala village also received similar assistance with a garden at his homestead.

Ndamanomhata said EIF spent N$150 000 helping the four Namibians.

EIF was established in 2001 through an Act of Parliament to promote sustainable economic development.

It is accredited by the Green Climate Fund to source funding for climate change mitigation and adaptation on behalf of the Namibian government.

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