Healthy food now in Epako resident’s reach

WFP assists with vegetable cultivation
The expected outcomes of the project are to strengthen local food markets and reduce malnutrition.
To empower the Epako community in Gobabis and promote access to healthy food, the World Food Programme (WFP) is cultivating vegetables at the Epako Clinic.
The WFP aims to address malnutrition in this community of approximately 9 500 members with its integrated food systems project.
“This is one way to empower community members who do not have access or funds to buy healthy food in the formal sector. This is a sustainable way to ensure that communities can sustain themselves and follow a healthy and balanced diet,” Shange-Ndamona Mungoba, the WFP's programme associate for biotechnology and food security, said.
The project includes drip irrigation, a pressure pump, a 10 000-litre tank as a water reservoir, and a shade net of 20m x 30m under which vegetables such as spinach, cabbage, beetroot and onions can be planted.
The initial development cost of the project amounts to U$20 000 from U$100 000 funded by Brazil.
To effectively manage the project and training, the WFP has now collaborated with the Namibian Association of Aspiring Farmers (Namfa).
According to the WFP, the expected outcomes of the project are to strengthen local food markets, reduce levels of malnutrition, promote access to a healthy diet, generate income, and encourage more women and young people from small-scale farming families to actively contribute to the development of a sustainable food system.
The upgrade of the food system at the Epako Clinic has already been discussed, and the WFP plans to provide solar dryers to extend the shelf life of products, as well as a scale to weigh the vegetables. The maintenance of shade nets is also already on the agenda.