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Cultivating Sustainability: The Salesian Hydroponics Eco Ubuntu Project

By The Salesian Institute Youth Projects

In a world where environmental sustainability is paramount, the Salesian Hydroponics Eco-Ubuntu Project stands out as a key initiative underpinning progress. This innovative initiative embodies the essence of community empowerment and ecological stewardship. Through a multifaceted approach encompassing renewable energy, water access, waste management, hydroponics, and sustainable cultivation, the project aims to create a greener future for all.

Launched by the Salesian AFM Provincial Office in Johannesburg in January 2024, the Eco-Ubuntu project is a testament to the Salesians' commitment to holistic development. At its core, the Eco-Ubuntu project seeks to instil a "green mindset" within communities by facilitating accessible and practical green interventions. From hydroponic systems and solar installation training to borehole installations, the project empowers individuals to embrace sustainable practices in their daily lives. Central to this endeavour is the promotion of hydroponics – a soil-less farming technique that maximizes resource efficiency and minimizes environmental impact.

The Salesian Institute Youth Projects (SIYP) in Green Point serves as a vital hub for the implementation of the project's initiatives in Cape Town. Through hydroponics and solar training programmes, young people are equipped with the skills and knowledge needed to thrive in a rapidly evolving green economy.

One of the project's standout achievements is the integration of hydroponics into education and employment pathways for disadvantaged youth. Under the NEETs Youth Employability Programme (Not in Education, Employment, or Training), young people are actively involved in the rollout and implementation of hydroponics projects in their communities. By engaging these youth in meaningful work, the project not only addresses unemployment but also fosters a sense of ownership and pride in environmental conservation efforts.

Furthermore, the Eco-Ubuntu project extends its reach to the Learn to Live School of Skills learners, offering them invaluable hands-on experience in hydroponic farming. By cultivating produce using hydroponic systems, these students not only learn practical skills but also develop a deeper appreciation for sustainable agriculture.

“As we continue to champion the cause of environmental sustainability through the Don Bosco Green Alliance, the impact of the Eco-Ubuntu project reverberates far beyond its immediate communities. It serves as a model for grassroots initiatives that harness the power of education, innovation, and collaboration to create a greener, more inclusive world,” says Gabriel Hamuy, NEETs Youth Employability Programme Manager.

In essence, the Salesian Hydroponics Eco Ubuntu Project, spearheaded by SIYP in Cape Town, is more than just a cultivation of plants; it is a cultivation of hope, resilience, and unity in the face of environmental challenges. By nurturing both the land and the people who tend to it, the project paves the way for a brighter, more sustainable future for generations to come.


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