BRIGHT SPOTS

Permaculture Course Returns

Over these past 10 years since originally being introduced to the Permaculture methodology of farming and lifestyle, our Permaculture programs have changed the way all of us at Mainsprings look at how we utilize our land, for both agricultural purposes and the positive impact on the environment around us. In February of 2020, we partnered with the Valley Foundation to create the East African Regenerative Network (EARN) to bring these methodologies and successes we have observed on our own farms to other organizations across East Africa. Despite a challenging start due to the pandemic, our original Permaculture partners, trained by all of us at EARN, are thriving and seeing an increase in food production, nutritional value, and are more resilient to climate change in their lands. After seeing the success of our first group of trainees, and with the ability to travel internationally once again, we were eager to continue the momentum that was started in 2020.

That’s why this past July, Mainsprings hosted our largest seminar ever- with 40 participants from 7 different countries coming to the Kitongo campus to join our third International Permaculture Design Certification Course (PDC). After more than two years with several programs on hold, including the volunteer program, having people simply visit- created an electric atmosphere on campus.

The course lasted 10 full days and all participants passed and received their official PDC certificates so they can return to their communities and begin designing their own Permaculture programs. It was an inspiring time for all of us, with so many like-minded leaders of organizations from across East Africa coming together, sharing with each other, and learning together- we could not be happier to be the center of such an opportunity. As one participant from Malawi said, “I think this is the answer to food security and the climate issues facing our communities!”.

Permaculture (derived from the concept of "permanent agriculture") is a type of sustainable or Regenerative Agriculture that seeks to replicate nature in a food producing farm.

While this past seminar was a success, there is so much more to do and so many more in need of these opportunities. This course alone, we had to say NO to 57 other organizations who could not attend our seminar due to our capacity, and have had many more inquiries since. We are extremely excited for what the future holds. We can’t wait to see how many individuals and organizations across the entire region want to learn from these methods, and know we will have a greater collective impact by growing this program.

Countries represented at this year's PDC Course:

Tanzania

Uganda

Rwanda

Democratic Republic of Congo

Kenya

Malawi

Madagascar

On top of the incredible training and support these organizations received, the participants were so inspired by our mission and children that they all chipped in with their own money to provide sanitary and other supplies for our residential girls for more than 7 months, leaving our entire staff shocked by their generosity!

THANK YOU!

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