Growing Gardens For Life – Our Orphanage Project
Some of the first students – ready and waiting!
Growing Gardens For Life is a non-profit corporation, licensed in the state of Washington and approved by the IRS as a tax exempt 501(c)3 organization. We come along side of orphanages around the world to teach the children how to grow food and then help them put in gardens and orchards.
At this time, our focus is on the 92 orphanages and group homes in Baja California and then on to other sites in the mountains and jungles of Mexico. We have had people who are assisting orphanages in Peru, Panama, Chile, and South Africa who have asked for us to come there as well. But we must walk before we can run!
Our first site is Rancho de Sus Ninos, located on the edge of Tecate, Baja California. It is just across the border, only an hour and a half from the San Diego airport. Sixty children are waiting to learn how to raise food and then join us in putting in gardens of delight.
We anticipate leading team(s) to the orphanages to create the infrastructure (gardens, compost piles, orchards, etc.) for the children to practice what is taught in the classes. We plan to teach and equip the older students so they can go to other orphanages and teach the principles of farming and install gardens in those facilities. Our goal is to equip the children so they will be able to share their knowledge the rest of their lives.
If you have interest in supporting our efforts, please let us know what you can do! Money is always welcome, but so are hard workers who understand that it is not easy. It is hard, slow work, but infinitely rewarding. Or if you just want to be on our mailing list and be kept up to date on what is going on, that’s fine too. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll welcome you to a life changing world! And prayer is always needed!
Our mission critical needs right now are:
Prayer Partners – to pray for God to lead us to the resources needed to bring Him glory!
We need classroom supplies, seeds, trees, and wheelbarrows. Don’t forget the shovels and rakes and gas for the Bobcat to break up the hard, hard soil of this desert landscape. And if you can squeeze in a ball or frisbee or game, that would be great! If the idea of shipping us a shovel is daunting, then send the funds and we’ll pick it up down below the border where money goes farther.
And our old list? It is amazing what has been provided! The ones in the color green have now been taken care of!
1. A legal person to guide us through the 501(c)3 process of creating a legal, tax exempt organization.
2. A finance person to help us set up our books.
3. A laison program developer to create relationships with churches and other groups of interest who would then sponsor specific orphanages. They would help maintain those relationships to achieve specific goals of support activity for both Growing Gardens For Life and for the partner orphanage(s).
4. An internet savy person to help Agua de Vida with their internet connection issues. A site visit will probably be required.
5. A landscaper to help design permaculture gardens for the sites.
6. Spanish speaking teachers (we can train on the content to be taught) with a love of gardening who can take several months to go teach at a site.
7. A curriculum developer to review our material to make sure we have it right for the ages and abilities of the children.
8. An ecumenically oriented church team coordinator to work with churches to prepare teams for short term mission trips to an orphanage.
9. An experienced HVAC person to design a simple geo-thermal cooling system.
10. A copy of Rosetta Stone for Spanish, the complete set, would help us prepare key volunteers for site visits. Knowing even a little Spanish will go a long ways toward reaching the hearts of the people.
We have been blessed with many folks who are interested in this project. For example a home orchardist who is studying citrus growing to be ready to plant orchards and teach how to prune and care for them has begun planning the best ways to provide fruit in the program.
There will be more…and if you have an idea or a skill you think would be helpful, feel free to call us and talk about it! Our number is 360-387-4449 and we are on Pacific Time in the US.