Five Schools In Imatong Equipped With Farm Implements

A Dutch based organization, SNV-Netherlands Development Organisation has equipped five schools in Imatong State with agricultural inputs for gardening projects in the schools.

By Peter Lokale Nakimangole

TORIT, 03 May 2016 [Gurtong] – While the Hope for Children and Women Foundation (HCWF) is the project's implementer, with the SNV being a supervisor of the project, the UNICEF funds the entire project, clarified the HCWF’s officials.

Airport View Primary School Friday last week in Torit, received a variety of high breed seeds and tools from the HCWF.

Speaking while handing over the donations, HCWF’s field officer, Ms. Atim Veronica said, “I have the pleasure to be with you and to actually handover to you these farm implements, groundnuts, maize, beans, vegetables seeds.”

“We also present to you, various modern farm tools such as spraying pump, watering cans, hoes, shovel, trowels and Racks,” the field officer added.

The school management together with the parents’ teachers association, PTA, and pupils registered their thanks to the donors.

"Those are just enough, and remember we need their (donor's) support always though temporarily. Because, again, relying on such handouts would always make us to be continued dependents, the idea which we don’t want to encourage hard work," expressed a community member.

"... What we need is just small material and financial support including technical, just a sort of guidance or teaching us how to fish, shall be enough for the entire support."

“On behalf of the beneficiaries especially the school management, I want to say 'I’m very grateful for the donation. It’s very helpful to both the pupils and teachers as individuals in this institution',” said Mr. Odera Gaitano, Deputy Head teacher of Airport View Primary School,

The head teacher disclosed that in previous years, the school has been using its own resources to purchase seeds but was able to afford the local variety though faced with limited funds for the high quality breeds.

“If the school was to use its own resources like last year, we wouldn’t go for high quality seeds and equipment,” Mr. Odera stressed.

Last year we purchased 20 kilograms of local variety groundnuts and the yield was not encouraging, he added.

Airport View Primary school had initiated the agricultural scheme with a vision of shaping the minds of the youth to be self-reliant.

“We earlier on wanted to use the concept of agricultural at school as an outdoor activity and to equip the pupils with survival skills, to prepare them for future challenges in life,” he said.

“Apart from poor seeds that led to low yields, we also encountered challenges such as unreliable rainfall, encroachment and destruction of the crop by stray animal and humans,” explained Mr. Odera.

Mr. David Makumbi, Director for Hope for Children and Women Foundation told Gurtong that other beneficiaries of the ongoing project include Obbo, Magwi, Kerepi, and Hope Academy Primary Schools in the State.

He noted that in addition to seeds and tools, SNV provides the four mentioned schools with labor for ploughing the gardens, barbed wire for fencing 250 square Metres (50M by 50M) area for the girls’ garden.

Ms. Pasquina Acidria, SNV’s programs Manager said the School Gardening project is a component of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), funded by UNICEF.

Ms. Acidria said the project intends to reverse the trend of dependency syndrome among the South Sudanese people in the country.

“We want to empower pupils, parents and school administration to be self-reliant to get every need for their livelihood," she expressed.

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