International Development - Enrich Lives This Earth Day

published on 22 Apr 2016

In some parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the main resource available for people to make a living, and provide for their family, is their land. The Salvation Army is working alongside mothers to help them to grow healthy, nutritious food for themselves and their families. This helps ensure healthier kids and happier families, and provides a tremendous step forward in people’s efforts to overcome their poverty.

On the outskirts of Kinshasa, The Salvation Army is supporting mothers to provide nutritious food for their children by growing and using moringa trees. Moringa is known as a ‘miracle tree’ because it is extremely rich in nutrients and almost every part has a beneficial use.

Veronique, a mother of four, became part of the moringa project as she was concerned about her children’s health. She said, ‘They were eating but not gaining weight. We were experiencing hard times and we had to struggle for survival. Nothing was going well.’

A Salvation Army volunteer from the local health clinic visited Veronique and discovered that her children were malnourished. So Veronique was provided with two moringa trees to plant and shown how to grind the leaves into a powder to add to the family’s food and help improve their nutrition. She was also given some moringa powder to help her children recover while she waited for the trees to produce leaves.

Veronique explained, ‘I am using moringa powder to add to my meals. Now my children are no longer falling ill. Now my children are healthy.’

So far The Salvation Army has provided moringa trees and training to over 100 mothers, but Veronique shared that there are many others in this area who are still in need of support:

‘My hope is that the project continues. Now life is OK for us. But some families are still suffering and have many children suffering from malnutrition.’

Through the 2016 Helping-Hand Appeal, members of Salvation Army Adult and Family Ministries groups across the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland will be fundraising to support people like Veronique as they strive to provide enough nutritious food for their families.

Could you get your corps or group get involved in the Helping-Hand Appeal?

£350 could help another mother in DRC to grow moringa trees and use its leaves to provide nutritious food for their children. £400 could help train another farmer in DRC to use acacia trees to improve their soil and grow the food they need to support their family. £650 could not only teach simple farming techniques to a farmer to increase the amount of food they can grow on their land, but also pass on that training to 30 others in their community.

To find out more about the appeal and how your corps/ group can support, visit here