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The Ndanifor Gardens UK Trust website has been updated. You are very welcome to make comments.
We are expecting the Just Giving ‘Donate Button’ to be added very soon.
Ken and Malcolm
Ndanifor Garden Trust UK website restructure.
Ndanifor Garden Trust UK was established in the 1990’s to support a community garden in Yaoundé, Cameroon.
This work has developed and recently moved to a new site in Bafut, Cameroon. An umbrella organisation: Betterworld, Cameroon has been established, which is now developing a Permaculture Eco Village. Betterworld is committed to involving and empowering local people in appropriate use of the land, networking with other Permaculture organisations internationally and establishing COOPs in their area.
A board of trustees based in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK continues to raise funds for the work of the Ndanifor Eco Village in Bafut. This funding is from regular donations by individuals through monthly standing orders and with fundraising events: concerts, auctions and CD sales.
We’re restructuring our website over the next month or two to improve access to those who want to support the exciting work in Cameroon.
Empowering others through Fair Trade
Joshua in traditional dress after a ceremony
I met Joshua, the director of Better World Cameroon (BWC) at the Ecovillage Design Education (EDE) training at Sieben Linden Ecovillage in Germany back in September 2013. I was so impressed with Joshua, his passion and commitment, I was determined to find a way to support the BWC project. We spent many late nights, swapping stories and sharing our life’s journeys. Through this engagement, we dreamed up a roadmap to support BWC reaching it’s ambition to become the Bafut EcoVillage for 2020.
Never doubt that a small group of committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has – Margeret Mead
To make the Ndanifor Permaculture Ecovillage Project (NPE) truly self sustaining, we needed to create something beyond an education and training centre for eco literacy. We recognised the wonderful work already done by the BWC team through the summer work camps and wanted to build on this. We understand that a social enterprise could be the economic “engine” at the heart of BWC. We see the potential to harness the creative talent of the youth while alleviating poverty. At the same time, we can address such global concerns as brain drain to the city, food sovereignty, food security and mitigate for unpredictable effects of climate change.
Roadmap for Bafut Ecovillage 2020
Upon returning to London, I met with Robert Simpson, a long supporter of BWC and CSA UK network director. He recognised the strengths of my strategic plan by introducing me to Ndanifor Garden Trust (NGUKT) board president Malcolm Green, who has fund raised for the purchase of land to create the permaculture demonstration site. Together, we teamed up with Steve Mangan and Jo Sugrue, Global Ecovillage Network (GEN) fund raisers to develop a workable proposition to connect a local farmers cooperative to NPE to supply a high value product into the global fair trade market. We have named the project, EcoVillage Fairtrade Initiative (EVFI), “For the alleviation of poverty within indigenous small farming communities, growing High Value Agricultural Product (HVAP) using permaculture techniques”.
My view is that all citizens of the global have a right to a fair income for work done and that this precept should be recognised as the norm and not the exception. I believe there is a rising consciousness amongst the global North of the associated issues and there is a willingness to pay a fair price to purchase goods grown in the global South.
We must join together to bring forth a sustainable global society founded on respect for nature, universal human rights, economic justice, and a culture of peace. Preamble, The Earth Charter
EVFI is a framework that can be replicated by any ecovillage that is part of the GEN network. The model is to set up (as existing for BWC) a permaculture hub of demonstration, education and business enterprise. We select an appropriate HVAP that will be processed by a workers cooperative of BWC, and then supplied into the global fair trade network. This organisation is managed and administered by BWC which takes a profit for the HVAP processing. Together we will build a network of local farmers who grow and supply the product and they make a fair income in return. What is really exciting is the holistic benefits that this model offers using permaculture thinking and design. We create a financial income, raise quality of life and health of local people. We conserve soil, raise fertility, capture and store water, translate all waste streams into valuable nutrients and build biological capital. All this makes for a more resilient and vibrate community that can support local people, regenerate the local ecology and generate a surplus income that can be ploughed back into the community. Truly a “win”, “win”, “win” scenario!
The first step will be to create a baseline quarter acre plot at Ndanifor to quantify the yield of an average selection of local food crops typically grown by local farmers. Then along side this we will plant up the same crops but this time reduce the planting to intercrop our HVAP crop. This comparison will enable us to assess yields and demonstrate the viability of the overall project. The BWC team are already working hard with Elke Cole, our natural builder extraordinaire to set up the land based infrastructure. Through our funding stream the team will be able to recruit additional resources to manage and support this on going enterprise while still generating a surplus income that can be reinvested into building more infrastructure.
Joshua in abundance
The UK team is now busy generating funding proposals to get to realise the vision. In parallel, we are researching high value plants suitable for this venture and setting up the fair trade supply channel. This is a exciting phase of the project and we feel sure that the seeds of hope planted in the work we are doing now will bear lasting fruits in the years to come. Please send us your blessing and we look forward to sharing good news in the near future.
“Towards a Better World Cameroon”
The Ndanifor UK Garden Trust auction on the 2nd October in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, was ably led by the hilarious Chris Bostock. Despite a relatively small crowd, he managed to get the donations up to a total of £1200. Add on a lottery win of £500 generously donated from ‘down south’ and the figure tops £1700.
Our auctioneer Chris Bostock, story teller, will charm and animate proceedings!
Food (soup, empanadas, home made breads and puds), A Ndanifor quiz with champagne prize,
live music and a book stall will ensure an entertaining afternoon.
There are amazing change-makers at work in West Africa. This site is dedicated to supporting their work and sharing their vision. In the country of Cameroon, deep in the heart of Biyem Assi city – a sprawling slum of Yaounde, capital of Cameroon – is a garden called Ndanifor. Created out of some acres of wasteland in the mid-90’s it flourished as a community garden bringing the spirit of the village into the urban sprawl. Originally called a nature park the garden is the inspiration of a remarkable man, Joshua Konkankoh, who has built up a unique grassroots NGO called Better World Cameroon (BWC) devoted to youth development in a country where young people need a vision of hope that builds confidence in the future. This is the Spirit of Ndanifor which cares for the land and the people who inhabit it. Joshua has drawn upon the indigenous traditions of his native town of Bafut to reconnect young people to their African heritage in order to build a better world. Now the Ndanifor Garden is entering a new phase of its evolution and has embraced, under the leadership of a new breed of volunteers working for BWC, plans to create an eco-lodge and permaculture teaching centre for sustainable, carbon neutral agriculture and building technologies. Joshua’s vision for BWC is as a channel for cross-cultural understanding and friendship. To this end the development of Ndanifor is also envisaged as a place to host international youth workcamps. The first workcamp will be held this year in August as part of BWC’s Youth Programme (BYP). More about this and the Ndanifor Eco-lodge and Permaculture Project (NEPP) can be found here and on BWC’s website at http://www.betterworld-cameroon.com