Namlo’s Greenhouse Project in Nicaragua Begins!

Building a greenhouse in Nicaragua

Building a greenhouse in Nicaragua

This week Program Manager Tim Gibb will travel to Nicaragua to finally start Namlo’s Greenhouse Project. Tim will be working with local Namlo contractors Rosario Velasquez Mendoza and Don Vincente Arauz to introduce household-sized greenhouses in three of the four remote mountain communities Namlo has been working with since 2006.

Tim Gibb, in white shirt, with one of the greenhouses in Las Palmas

Tim Gibb, in white shirt, with one of the greenhouses in Las Palmas

Designed by Tim over the space of five years, over twenty of the innovative greenhouses were initially introduced to farmers in Las Palmas, and have demonstrated that they are capable of dramatically increasing dietary diversity, nutrition and incomes. Nicaragua still suffers from high levels of poor nutrition, resulting in a large portion of the child population under five suffering from stunted growth. Conversely, there is a growing trend towards obesity as the consumption of snack foods is on the increase.

The Namlo Greenhouse will enable families to not only increase the production and consumption of vegetables at the household level, but the greenhouses have proven capable of growing enough seedlings to help poor farmers earn money selling the seedlings in the local markets. The greenhouses themselves cost around $250 of materials, and we are expecting farmers to pay an initial deposit of $50. Initially we will be monitoring the farmers use and success with the greenhouses, and we would like to see additional greenhouses taken up by more farmers in Namlo’s communities. We also hope to see the spread of the greenhouses throughout Nicaragua, based on the success in our communities

Nicaraguan farmer with vegetables from his greenhouse

Nicaraguan farmer with vegetables from his greenhouse

Initial funding for this project was raised from a crowdfunding initiative, from individual donor Arthur Gibb Jr., Global Community Innovations and from matching funds from the Benito and Frances C Gaguine Foundation.

Namlo coordinator Rosario Velasques Mendoza with greenhouse farmer

Namlo coordinator Rosario Velasques Mendoza with greenhouse farmer

Right now we’ve raised enough money to get the project started, but we are still looking for people to help invest on an ongoing basis and help cover the cost of assembling and transporting the greenhouses, running costs of the project, and providing horticultural training to introduce organic techniques to the farmers. We also believe this project will be a great opportunity for people who are looking for chance to volunteer in a new, exciting and innovative approach that has the potential to spread regionally.

To find out more about volunteering for this project, contact kfrausto@namlo.org.  To donate to the Namlo Greenhouse project, click on https://donate.firstgiving.com/secure/donate/b8eacde4-edd0-11df-ab8c4061860da51d?parentPath=https://donatetab.firstgiving.com/tab?page_id=1143115152287231&is_page_administrator=True