Community gardens help Ethiopia’s urban poor grow
Since 2008 in Ethiopia, the Urban Gardens Program has strived to improve the general health and incomes of women, orphans and vulnerable children affected by HIV/AIDS, through urban agriculture.
By Borja Santos Porras, Debre Zeit
Radio Netherlands Worldwide – Africa
25 June 2012
“My husband died from HIV/AIDS years ago and then I lost my first daughter the same way,” says Sishae, an elderly widow who works in a community garden established in 2010 in the town of Debre Zeit, an hour south of Addis Ababa.
“By working in the garden I now have some income to help support my children and my grandchildren,” she explains.
Since 2008, the USAID Urban Gardens Program for HIV Affected Women and Children has reached over 34,200 households in Ethiopia through community and school gardens. Municipalities donate a piece of land to be worked by people selected according to HIV/AIDS status and economic vulnerability. The USAID program also provides drip kit technology for irrigation and often digs wells to increase the likelihood of sustainability.