Feeding the planet was the focal topic of the two humanitarian projects in Ethiopia and Kenya that KKL-JNF presented on October 15 at an event at the Israel Pavillon at Expo Milano.
Karine Bolton Laor, KKL-JNF Director for International Cooperation and Conferences, introduced the two projects - Seeds of Hope in Ethiopia, and Furrows in the Desert in Kenya – that are being supported by KKL-JNF, and discussed how the local populations in the said regions were benefiting from these initiatives.
Seeds of Hope was started by biologist Shoshana Haran, who, at the request of MCSPA Catholic missionaries, decided to share her years of seed research with the Butijara people of Ethiopia. The Seeds of Hope project aims to provide small-holder farmers with resilient high-quality tomato seeds suitable to semi-arid lands.
The Furrows in the Desert project was started by Moti Harari, who is responsible for the R&D station in the Arava. This project, which is taking place in the region of Turkana in Kenya, is using Israeli expertise and experience to teach the Turkana people how to farm in this semi-arid region, where it has never been done before. The Turkana people are traditionally nomadic pastoralists, but due to the effects of climate change and droughts, this professional is becoming unsustainable for them. Learning how to farm in semi-arid regions such as this one is potentially lifesaving.
These two projects, which are supported by KKL-JNF, empower populations by equipping them essential tools for self sustenance.
The video on these two programs, which was shown to the audience, ended with the apt slogan: “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, teach him how to fish and he’ll eat for a lifetime”.
Nyashwaya Peterson, a representative of Turkana who is responsible for the Kenya Pavilion at the Expo, spoke about the survival issues this population has to face, which are exacerbated by the geopolitical situation and climate change. The assistance provided by KKL-JNF and its Friends from around the world, particularly from Italy is essential for their survival.
KKL-JNF volunteers share their knowledge with young Kenyans in Turkana – many of them orphans – aiding them in the transformation from shepherds to farmers by providing them with seeds and infrastructure.
These young people will create new groups that will teach others what they have been learning. Nyashwaya Peterson, in name of the Turkana people, expressed warm gratitude to KKL-JNF for this project.
Both projects work with volunteers and continuously require new energy, so Shoshana Haran and Moti Harari have called upon the audience to help spread the word and encourage others to contribute.
With the support of its Friends worldwide, KKL-JNF works every day to combat desertification and promote food security and sustainability, happily sharing its knowledge with other countries around the world.
From the positive response of the audience following the presentations, it was evident that the event hugely successful in spreading awareness about KKL-JNF's work for the benefit of people and their environment worldwide.