Food gardening to alleviate poverty

Victor Mecoamere

Victor Mecoamere

Food security is a vital element in poverty alleviation, Theo Mxakwe, Nestlé's SA's corporate communication and public affairs director, said this week.

That is why the company has been running the Nestle Community Nutrition Awards for the past 14 years.

"Food security is an important element in poverty alleviation and through this initiative we are striving to build capacity for women to ensure that their initiatives remain sustainable," he said.

These days food prices are soaring and food is becoming increasingly unaffordable, meaning that communities need to consider creating their own food through food gardening.

It was no different 14 years ago when Nestlé started the awards to recognise and reward efforts by women who work towards improving the nutritional status of their communities.

This has led to a significant contribution to the initiative that has created a number of self-reliant women who have built their projects from very small establishments and have ensured food security for their families and communities.

So far 60 women have won and received financial rewards for their efforts. Now Nestle has reconceptualised the Nutrition Awards to make them more sustainable and adopt a programmatic yearly intervention that will enhance more livelihoods.

The awards are organised in partnership with Sowetan, international women empowerment organisation Soroptimist International and South Africa's provincial Government Communication Information Systems (GCIS) to ensure that as many women as possible enter the competition.

l The closing date for entries is July 31. For more details phone 011-889-6771.