To honor the Lord in a manner consistent with Biblical principles as we train, equip and empower village families, schools, and students through sustainable food programs, small business development, and educational sponsorships.
Eric and Cindy Noel of Warriors Mark, PA
In January of 2019, we were invited to participate in a community meeting where we had the honor of presenting the village of Pueblo Viejo with their first rototiller and hand tools. When we made the offer to work shoulder-to-shoulder with those who wanted to build a backyard vegetable garden, we had eight families come forward. Each project included soil preparation, fence installation, seeding, weeding/cultivating, moisture/shade control, harvest, food preparation/preservation, and seed saving.
Vegetable Garden Project
The average diet of village families consists of beans, rice, and corn. Many have no concept of how to incorporate vegetables into their diet, so this backyard garden project has the potential to increase the nutritional health of many families. As a long-range goal, we are ‘sowing a seed’ of entreprenuership as we encourage farmers to plan for an increase of their vegetable production as we work toward the development of a village market where they not only can provide nutritious food for their family, but also to other families in the village.
This was the beginning of something BIG! As the excitement begins to spread among the village, more families want to build gardens for their family. There is also interest from elementary schools to begin vegetable garden projects so they can offer feeding programs to the students. This would enable current feeding programs to not only be extended, but also provide a wider variety of food for the children. CONSIDER SPONSORING A BACKYARD VEGETABLE OR CHICKEN PROJECT with a donation of $200.00!
Backyard Chicken Project
One of our goals has been to encourage families to get their livestock out of the yard and into a confined area to control the sickness and disease that is prevalent in indigenous communities. This project provides fencing and training in vermiculture (worm-farming), which supplies the needed daily nutrients for the chickens and eliminates the need to purchase feed.
This effort is three-fold in benefit - a healthy source of protein is added to the family diet, increased sanitation and wellness, and the opportunity to develop a small business selling local chickens to provide a viable income.
Rosenda and Tina are the first to begin the backyard chicken project - they are both very industrious and hard-working, so we know that they will be successful in undertaking this new business venture.
An important element of the sustainable garden project is using vermiculture to compost fruit and vegetable scraps, which provides seed-starting substrate as well as daily food for the chickens. The chickens provide protein, rich manure for composting, and an income stream.
Each component working together from soil-to- seed-to-harvest-to-table-to market provides a sustainable, economical and profitable food and income source.
The Value of Encouragment
Sylvia wanted to expand her small baking business and asked if Sowing Seeds could help her, so we provided her with new recipes to experiment with and much needed baking supplies. After encouraging Sylvia to start doubling her production and introducing new products, she began selling everything she made and started receiving custom orders! This simple support and encouragement, along with some basic marketing and budgeting guidance, was all Sylvia needed to step out in courage to fulfill her dream of owning a small bakery stand at her home.
Shakes & Cakes
Norma and Mirna, sisters-in-law, are excited to start selling shakes and cakes door to door in their village. After sharing this desire with us and asking for help, they then asked “how do you make shakes anyway?!” With support and guidance of Sowing Seeds and their courageous and determined spirits, they are willing to try most anything to help their families … and they may be the first to introduce a shake experience in a remote village!
Rosenda recently graduated from high school, a privilege for teens in Belize. She lives in a remote village and was selected to receive a scholarship from a local church.
This hard-working, eager-to-learn gal wants to use her education to open a small restaurant in her village. She has a love of cooking and baking and is presently making and selling tamales at the bus stop to help pay for her sister’s college tuition. Sowing Seeds provided some basic kitchen supplies, new recipes and some hands-on training to get her started working toward her dream.
Rosenda also works at a food stand at the local high school so she can gain experience working with the public.
We will continue to work with Rosenda through these initial developmental stages …. and will one day have lunch in her restaurant!
It was very clear to us not long after meeting village families that one of the greatest needs is financial support for educational expenses. Many teenagers are not able to complete their high school and/or technical education because they are required to purchase all needed books, supplies, and uniforms. The government subsidizes the tuition for primary grades plus the first two years of secondary education, but families must then pay for tuition in the final two years of high school and/or technical school. In addition to helping individual students secure a complete education, we are also helping to establish libraries, provide educational training and classroom materials, computers, playground equipment and monetary resources for feeding programs.
Sowing Seeds has established a sponsorship fund to help students complete their secondary and extended education. All sponsorships require certain levels of academic and personal accountability. Sponsors are encouraged to have frequent correspondence with their sponsored student, to build a relationship with the student and his/her family, and to be a 'cheerleader' for the student as they pursue their educational goals. If you are interested in helping a student achieve his/her dreams for a better future, please click on the tab below and follow the instructions.
Even the smallest donation of educational supplies and equipment is greatly needed and most appreciated. Storage cabinets, shelving, white boards, school supplies, classroom educational helps, reading books, book bags, even toilet paper are never items taken for granted by teachers and students alike. These items are shipped via sea crate - if you’d like to donate items, let us know.
Full Bellies Make Better Learners
Most schools desire to offer a feeding program at lunchtime to eliminate students, including pre-schoolers, from having to walk home. For some, this is not an issue because they live close - for others, they walk a long distance to reach home, without much time to eat before they need to return back to school. Of course, the funds needed to offer a feeding program are very scarce so Sowing Seeds is working to provide support by developing school gardens and providing funds to purchase beans and rice. If you’d like to help contribute, click the link below.
Be Our Partner!
Be part of this exciting mission that is helping change lives in remote villages. Share your expertise and skills - here or there, be a prayer warrior or donate financially so that our work can continue and expand to sow more seeds in Belize
Enjoy a Meal…Support a Cause
HARVEST DINNERS ON THE FARM - Every locally sourced, handcrafted plate achieves that elusive, cuisine-defining balance of American and Belizean flavors that are sure to please! Come to Eric & Cindy’s farm to enjoy a quaint evening of great food, explore our gardens and visit the Spice Hut to find exclusive products from Belize. These small group dinners are held throughout the summer under our outdoor pavillion - they sell out quickly, so reserve your seat today! All proceeds from the dinners go directly to our work in the villages. To reserve a seat, click the link below.
1ST ANNUAL BENEFIT BANQUET - This fine dining, semi-formal evening will take place at Gilbrook Farm in Warriors Mark inside the lovely historical barn venue. If the beauty of the stream meandering through the meadow and the inviting landscape doesn’t totally capture your heart …. the delicious catered meal will! And to top it off, a live auction of much sought after services, goods and who-knows-what will bring an element of entertainment and fun energy to the evening.
Groups tables are available - great for a family celebration or as an offering of appreciation for your business partners and/or employees!
To reserve space, clink the link below.