12 May Toitskraal (Ephraim Mogale)
In Toitskral, Limpopo province, thanks to Amref we get a glimpse at South Africa’s farming from the perspective of the mainly black labourers who toil on land belonging to others. It’s a poor community. Many are illegal migrants from other African countries who work as hired hands for a pittance. The vegetable garden we are donating to the community aims at revitalizing an old project that was abandoned years ago for lack of funding. With our tractors we till the field, clearing it of weeds and reading it for cultivation, complete with the gardening tools and 5,000 seedlings each to grow tomatoes, onions, spinach, beetroots and peppers we are donating to the community to kick-start the project. We will also launch a fund raising campaign, through Amref, to finance a fence to protect the crops from roaming cattle, and a pump to get water from a nearby stream. Once fully operational, the vegetable garden will provide fresh produce to needy families and to those in the community who take care of the many children left to fend for themselves because of AIDS or extreme poverty – solidarity is a strong value in African tradition. The vegetable garden will also help foster healthier eating, thus putting a stop to the spread of deadly conditions such as diabetes and heart disease. What a happy day for the Xtractor team!