Cape Town-based initiative, Soil for Life, has been selected as one of this year’s Impumelelo Social Innovations Award Winners. The decision was made after Pat Featherstone, Soil for Life’s Operations Director, presented their Home Garden Project to the Impumelelo Social Innovations Centre’s National Selection Committee in Cape Town in July. Soil for Life is one of nineteen award winners, which were announced at Impumelelo’s gala awards ceremony on the 6th September 2012 at the Baxter Theatre in Cape Town.
Through Soil for Life’s the Food Gardening Enterprise (FGE) and their Home Food Gardening Programme (HFGP), 827 poorly educated, under-skilled and food insecure people in impoverished communities around Cape Town were taught the skills to grow their own food in an environmentally sustainable manner.
On receiving the award, Pat Featherstone of Soil for Life told the Green Africa Directory that “We’re thrilled with the award. It’s a testament to years of hard work and dedication on the part of our team. It also serves not only to raise awareness of the dire situation on our doorsteps, but also to raise support for the work that we are doing in the poor communities in and around Cape Town.”
Soil for Life has facilitated the establishment of 538 productive home gardens, which benefits 3500 community members, by teaching people how to create opportunities for themselves using low-cost or freely available materials while simultaneously cleaning up their communities. The project also offers a skills programme, which teaches simple business skills – encouraging participants to pursue their newfound skills at home or in groups and to set up small outlets for their wares.
The Impumelelo Social Innovations Center is a non-profit organisation, established in 1999, that identifies, rewards, and promotes social innovation public-private projects which improve the quality of life of the poor in South Africa. Impumelelo has awarded more than 300 projects that solve key public problems. Soil for Life addresses poverty and poor nutrition by providing individuals with skills that help communities in impoverished areas to provide cost efficient food for themselves, while learning to create their own small businesses.
For more information on what Soil for Life does, watch the video below: