We aim to empower people in Zambia by providing them the tools and the energy with highly nutritious food containing micronutrients, which will be a sustainable source of food availability, bringing both economical and knowledge benefits for the communities.
Which problem do I/we aim to solve ? and why?
The problem we aim to solve is the lack of micronutrients present in staple food people consume on a daily basis as well as the lack of awareness of how to be sustainable in the long-term when it comes to self-subsistency. As almost half of the population in Zambia are children from 0 to 14 years old, according to the World´s Factbook, micronutrients are vital for them to grow, have energy to develop and, most importantly, have a healthier life. Therefore, the main reason that supports this idea is to empower especially children and help increase the life expectancy in Zambia through better food, knowledge and entrepreneurship.
My/Our idea for a solution
By developing the planting of ensete ventricosum, false banana plants, which can be found in Ethiopia and Zimbabwe, closer to our primary target. This plant can be used as food security, since this species does not require high maintenance as it does not need regular watering, can live for 7 years and is resistant to droughts. In addition, each mature plant can provide about 40 kg of food, from which coffee can be produced and its fiber can be used to make useful daily objects, for instance, mats and ropes.
Moreover, it could contribute to local entrepreneurship by training small groups of people of many villages who can then teach others these skills. This would be an enset-coffee system, where you can get crops and also income. Also, we thought of combining this idea with supply of local insects which are rich in micronutrients, especially protein, calcium and iron, which are essential for the human body.
Why is my/our solution an innovative idea and tackles the challenge from a new perspective
Even though the false banana species exists in other countries and the consumption of insects as a nutritious food is already a practice in Zambia, combining the two of them would make this project innovative as we complement high levels of nutrition and reliable source of food with income and entrepreneurship generation. Moreover, this project could be a channel to tackle the education issue in Zambia as by creating some money through our system. Furthermore, this project would promote cooperation between African countries, especially between Ethiopia, Zimbabwe and Zambia, where locals from the countries where the Enset plant grows can also transfer their knowledge related to the various purposes it can fulfill. Thus, it would be also innovative in the sense that it would strengthen the PAN-African relationship.
How is my/our idea feasible?
Regarding the Enset plant, as there are droughts in Zambia and this plant is able to survive these climate conditions, it would be a good source of food during these periods of time. Then, with the fiber from the plant they can make tools or materials to improve daily activities as well as produce coffee to sell, so that they could have a source of income to create a natural area within a farm where insects (source of micronutrients) are grown and make a sustainable system. When it comes to transportation, volunteers or organisations, who support the project, would go to different villages and give training to locals.
Which methods and channels do I/we want to utilise?
In order to promote this idea on a global scale we would use social media with posters, videos and photos that could show how this project will be implemented, its impacts in Zambia and how people can contribute to this cause. In this way we aim to spread the word around the world and get additional support on an international scale and try to involve non-profitable organisations to join us. In addition, our project will use the help of the Semay non-profitable student organization (http://semay.de/) to further promote our project through, not only its Facebook page (we are now 150 students around the world), but also across students from the university who want to learn more about this cause and support it.
What’s my/our expected outcome and improvement?
Reach at least the 40% of the 46.12% kids from 0-12 years of the entire population of Zambia by developing the system through pyramid training (one train more, those train more and so on) among small groups of locals and volunteers in the villages. Ideally, there would be a small group of individuals or a representative who would be responsible for spreading the knowledge across the village.
As a result of eating food rich in micronutrients, children could have a better and stronger life to pursue as many goals as they want to and also create a sustainable culture, environment and economic empowerment throughout generations.
What's my/our budget and which partners I/we would expect to be valuable
Our budget will consist of the transportation expenses for the importation of the seeds and the mature plant, plus the transportation through villages for the training in this system, in order to ensure that this system is reaching into the villages of Zambia, we require a distribution partner who shares our commitment to ending food insecurity in Zambia. Besides the partners, we could gather volunteers who are willing to join this cause as well as donations from people who want to get involved.
|Team:||Daniel Cardenas, Teresa Duarte, Andreas Kasteleiner|