Founded by local South Peninsula resident Justin Bonello to create a local wellbeing economy and to right the wrongs of our food production system, Neighbourhood Farms is a registered NPO (Not for Profit Organization) whose primary focus is to grow food, minds and community by nurturing children and neighbours so that they become advocates for change into their communities and into the future.
Our mission promotes sustainable, ethical and healthy food production and consumption, develops the local economy, stimulates food security, integrates education and environmentally sustainable farming practises that results in social change for the betterment of all the South Peninsula neighbourhoods
Not only do we grow great wholesome food, create local employment and entrepreneurial opportunities, we give our teachers real edible educational resources.
At every school we partner with, we install an outdoor classroom. A space for our children to learn in a tactile environment. Where geography, science, biology and economics can be brought to life in a biologically diverse environment.
Around the classroom, we design and grow a regenerative permaculture garden, complete with fruit bearing trees, perennial gardens filled with edible, indigenous and medicinal plants and an allotment garden that children must plant and nurture to learn the value of plant life and grow their own good nutritious food.
These outdoor spaces not only provide a space for children to feel safe in, they integrate education and the outdoors and connect children and community members with where their food comes from, making us all more environmentally conscious and connected.
The economic heart of the project is the Market Garden where seasonal organic produce is grown, harvested, washed and packed onsite daily and then sold to community members in our Neighbourhood Farm stalls, providing a small revenue stream that allows the project to be economically self-sustainable.
Combined, the outdoor classrooms, market gardens, permaculture gardens and Neighbourhood Farm stalls make schools community hubs that create local employment, are used to both train small-scale / community farmers and give ethical farmers and food based entrepreneurs a cost effective retail solution, thereby securing local food supply, unlocking further potential for local food production and bringing positive benefits to the social, natural and economic environment of communities.
Our dream would be to use the learnings of the South Peninsula Pilot project and replicate the pilot project into further communities across the Western Cape.
Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NeighbourhoodFarm/
Photos courtesy: Louis Hiemstra