Permaculturist, facilitator and spoken word artist Chuma Mgcoyi has been selected as the 2021 EESI Entrepreneur by the SA Urban Food and Farming Trust. Her project aims to promote, enable and support cultivation of diverse indigenous perennial food and medicinal crops by existing urban food gardeners in Langa, in order to link environmental stewardship with improved livelihoods and quality of life in this underresourced community.
“Working with farmers for me is very rewarding as I am really passionate about food and farming and how locally we source our food. So mainly it’s the participatory learning that means the most to me, the learning from one another. I am also gaining by learning from different people, especially the elderly. Knowing that am contributing to the bigger food system by building good synergy around community gardening to better the community also means a lot.”Chuma Mgcoyi, 2021 EESI Entrepreneur
Chuma will be working with Langa food gardeners to increase biodiverse greenspaces, adopt farming practices that improve soil health through increased biodiversity, reduce non-organic pesticide use, and take advantage of new culinary and medicinal crops from these plants for income and improved health.
“Biodiversity plays a crucial role in the community especially around nutrition through its influence on food production by supporting a large number of plant species and therefore a greater variety of crops that provide different nutrients for people.”Chuma Mgcoyi, 2021 EESI Entrepreneur
Since 2019, the SA Urban Food & Farming Trust has been selected to run the Environmental Entrepreneur Support Initiative (EESI) programme which supports young leaders of exceptional ability who are already realising outcomes that advance environmental sustainability and who are at a point in their careers where they will benefit from support that enhances their leadership capacities.
Learn more: EESI programme