In the last month, the Permaculture Explorers went on two field trips for learning exchanges: one to Trygive’s Community Garden and one to Agnes’ home garden. At both sites, local women from the area were in attendance, working with our group of women to plant, learn, sing and dance together.
At Trygive’s Community Garden we planted 1,234 seedlings, watered and mulched them in 45 minutes! Suzan, Trygive’s wife was SO HAPPY because they did the work so quickly and saved her much time and effort. Plus we all had fun, singing as we worked and celebrating the connection with new friends. One of the Permaculture Explorers said, “When we met the mothers, we became one and now we love each other.”
The next week we went to Agnes’ home garden at a new home she is building. Agnes is our business educator. LOVELY woman who has been teaching small enterprise development in rural areas for more than 25 years. She is building a home in a village called White City outside of Acornhoek. She invited our women to come and see what she is doing in her garden, even though the house is not yet built. We hired a taxi and took 11 from our group out there. Agnes had invited a few of the women from her area to come when we visited. She has been trying to get some of the women interested in doing a permaculture garden but hasn’t really found a way to motivate them. 14 women showed up and they all had such a wonderful time together. One of our group said, “When we came in they did a welcome song and we felt very warmly welcomed.”
Each of our women stood up and talked about the project and what it means to them and what they are learning. Lots of singing and laughter and the bread and juice we took, truly ended up being the loaves and fishes. Later that day, Agnes sent me a message saying the women out there were all inspired and were thinking about their next steps to get going on their gardens.
Then at our next business class, Agnes shared a story with the group. She said later in the week, she got a call from one of the women asking if she could come to her house, as there were some women wanting to see her garden. When Agnes arrived, there were 50 women at her gate wanting to get in to see what is happening. She said they are very excited and motivated because of the Permaculture Explorers visit. She said one of the women said her husband pushed her to go. He said, “Can’t you hear they are singing? Go!” This is the power of women in action!
If you’d like to add your energy and resources to this incredible project, go to our website https://zingelaulwazi.org.za/get-involved/
Every bit helps! Thank you!