Our Flagship environmental programme supports environmental awareness and urban agriculture.  The Flagship programme provides a platform which encourages both young and old to learn more about organic propagation of vegetable seedlings and herbs while ensuring food security and income generation for the individuals and the vulnerable communities we work with. In line with our integrated and holistic approach, our environmental activities also promote healthy nutrition and food security as well as providing hunger relief.

The programme has three distinct focus areas: The Mhani Gingi Nursery, the Community Gardens, and the Centre of Social Entrepreneurial Excellence which showcases our vertical gardens and other innovations to include persons with physical disabilities (PWPD) in gardening activities.  In August 2020 midst the COVID-19 viral pandemic, the Mhani Gingi Community Satellite Food Station was opened to co-ordinate our soup kitchens providing relief in hungry communities in the Cape metropole.  Also under the umbrella of the Flagship programme is our SpekMania! initiative launched in 2019 to champion the spekboom indigenous shrub as a fighter against the adverse effects of climate change.

The Mhani Gingi Nursery

The main project operated by Mhani Gingi is the organic Herb and Vegetable Seedling Nursery. The Mhani Gingi Nursery follows and champions the principles of EEC: Education, Enterprise, and Consumption. Education is essential for success, as it ensures the sustainability and long-term effects of an effort. A person who has been educated with business or financial skills as well as the technicalities of gardening is far more capable of establishing a productive garden which will enable them to be self-sufficient.  The principle of Enterprise dictates that the Nursery should provide employment and business opportunities as well as promoting the growing of food for consumption.

The Nursery consists of several gardening tunnels, a hot house, 3 ‘Wendy houses’ for tool storage, an office, a training facility, as well as planting beds  for the cultivation of vegetables.  A brand new containerised agri-processing unit delivered in May 2021 is equipped for the cutting, preparation and processing  of produce harvested from the Mhani Gingi community gardens.  This unit stands alongside other tunnels which house the African Grower compact urban self-growing food system that is distributed in the homes of beneficiaries in the greater Cape Town area.   A vertical herb garden made of recycled containers permits people in wheelchairs to participate in gardening.

Thousands of herb and vegetable seedlings propagated in the hot house supply the community gardens supervised by Mhani Gingi and the seedlings, vegetables, herbs, plants and crafts are also sold at markets in Cape Town for income.

The Mhani Gingi Nursery is used in many ways to benefit both network members and the Cape Flats communities within which Mhani Gingi works.

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Community Gardens

Use what you have to attract and keep what you need.” – It is of utmost importance to utilise every possible available space to produce nutritious food. This practice has worked very well for Mhani Gingi and thanks to the generous donation of seedlings from Pick n Pay, it is being extended into communities via unused grounds at local schools, creches, hospitals, prisons and even office parks on the Cape Flats.

By promoting better nutritional practices at all levels as well as programmes that enhance direct and immediate access to food by the neediest, Mhani Gingi places the emphasis on “Prevention is better than cure.

It is hoped that as school children and communities are taught how to produce and eat healthy food, more and more opportunistic diseases, caused by lack of nutrition, will be eradicated.

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SpekMania!

Aligned with the environmental focus of The Flagship programme, Mhani Gingi launched the SpekMania! initiative championing the spekboom as a fighter against climate change.  because of the plant’s exceptional carbon storage capabilities. The project is led by Mhani Gingi Trustee, Dr. Earl Starr, and a technical expert who also helps to drive sales of spekboom seedlings and plants to the public.

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Awards and Accolades

The activities of the the Fagship have gained attention and acknoledgment especially in the field of women and the environment.

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