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Food Security, Farming and Permaculture

Rucore’s approach to food security, sustainable farming and land use aims at both the preservation and enhancement of community landscapes in which farming and gardening takes place. We also support food production systems, livelihoods and climate change adaptability. Rucore works with farmers, gardeners and communities who serve local needs, develop local knowledge and who conserve natural resources and biological diversity.

Rucore works with international NGO’s, funders and investors as well as local organizations, communities and individuals and supports a wider movement towards food sovereignty on the African continent and globally. Offering an alternative to high input, industrial agriculture, the main focus of our work in agriculture is towards ecologically sound farming practices that take into account the complexity and diversity of natural systems and that maintain a balance between production and sustainability. These systems are designed to produce healthy, nutritious food, harvest and store rainwater, grow soil biology and support livelihoods within these landscapes.

One important development, particularly for drier, seasonal-rainfall environments that cover large areas of the region, has been the recognition of the potential to use livestock to improve the land, led by the work of the Africa Centre for Holistic Management. In brief, the approach simulates with cattle, goats and sheep what huge herds of wild animals like buffalo and wildebeest have been doing for millennia.

Rucore works with SEED in rolling out their program in the Northwest Province to create productive outdoor classrooms in South Africa’s schools.

At the Tlholego Ecovillage and its Learning Centre near Rustenburg, we continue to teach permaculture design to individuals and communities across southern Africa. Programs can be designed for specific community needs.

Rucore continues its 15-year relationship with the Thandanani Gardening Club in rural KwaZulu Natal working to improve biodiversity and to enhance production methods. Last year the GEF SGP was a key supporter of this programme. In May 2012 we implemented rainwater harvesting earthworks and soil erosion controls in the Thandanani garden.

Rucore is currently facilitating a collaboration in rainwater earthworks and biological farming with Ashoka Fellows working in southern Africa in rural innovation and farming.

For more information contact paul@rucore.org.za

Links:

http://www.ecoagriculture.org/
http://www.seed.org.za/
http://www.trees.co.za/
http://casfs.ucsc.edu/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food_sovereignty
http://sites.tufts.edu/jha/archives/1241