Growing food security
Covid-19 has isolated communities and threatened food security in the Solomon Islands, forcing the closure of critical shipping routes. Many people have turned to what they know best – the land and the sea.
Florence, a mother of three, depends on what she catches and grows to feed her family. She also makes a small income selling surplus produce from her garden.
When Covid-19 came to her small island community, she and her neighbours couldn’t access local markets and struggled to get the resources they needed.
“It is quite difficult to get materials or seeds to plant vegetables and other food crops during this time,” she says.
Florence inspects eggplants grown with seeds provided by Save the Children.
With the support of the Australian Government, Save the Children provided vegetable seeds to Florence’s community to improve food security. The seeds were coupled with lessons on backyard farming and tips for maintaining a nutritious diet.
We also sent wood to help build a big community garden. Young people were key in setting up the new space.
“We gathered the youth in our community, and we built a nursery where we planted seeds. When the seeds were old enough, people from the community took them and planted them in their own gardens,” Florence says, holding her recently harvested eggplants.
Florence is thankful for Save the Children’s support, saying “young people in the community have also participated in looking after the nursery and have learnt a lot of new skills.”
Seedlings in the community nursery built with Save the Children’s support.
A new Covid-normal
As the people of the Solomon Islands brace themselves for more waves of Covid variants, we’ll be there to help make sure children and families are as safe as possible.
Together with the United Nations Development Fund (UNDP), we’re scaling up our support to get water tanks into schools and let students know the importance of good hand hygiene. Access to clean water will not only help encourage children to go to school, but make sure they’re safe while they’re there.
The Solomon Islands are charting their own course to a new covid-normal, like all countries everywhere. We’ll be there every step of the way to make sure our Pacific neighbours don’t get left behind.
All of us together, against Covid-19.
*Names have been changed to protect identities.
Save the Children’s programs in the Solomon Islands are supported by the Australian Government through the Australian NGO Cooperation Program and the Australian Humanitarian Partnership.
Photos: Collin Leafasia/Save the Children Solomon Islands.