Example Student Assignment on Food Security, Nutrition and Home Gardening

I’ve been avidly interested in home gardening for over 40 years. Indeed, in the mid-70s I formed an urban agricultural center with some colleagues; it’s still going strong. http://seattletilth.org/

This life-long passion for growing food has created a foundation for my favorite online course: Food Security, Nutrition and Home Gardens. http://www.csd-i.org/ol-303-food-nutrition-gardens1/

Two course participants, John Bosco Odongo in Western Kenya, and Conrad Otterness in North Carolina, are working to solve nutrition problems on the northern shores of Lake Victoria, and sent me an assignment last week that is very well done that I would like to share.

In this course students are required to perform three baseline surveys within their communities: one on food security, one on food diversity, and one on home garden capacity. This information will help them better plan and launch a home gardening project and will also give them a baseline to compare to in a year to see if they’re having impact.

John and Conrad’s assessments showed a severe level of food insecurity and low dietary diversity in their community. Further, unusually strong rains that began in 1997 have regularly flooded farm fields undermining farming activity and contributing to the food insecurity.

After gaining a better sense of where the community is nutritionally, students facilitate a four-hour community workshop on the basics of nutrition and how home gardens can increase both food security and food diversity for families.

As part of the workshop they prepare a luncheon for the group made up of nutritious food that can be grown in home gardens as an example of the delicious meals that can be made out of garden produce. John and Conrad did an exemplary job in their assignment as evidenced by the photos they sent. It is an absolutely beautiful presentation.

Please follow this link in order to enjoy it to.

Thank you.

Tim Magee

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