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Stories from the Field

The Celebration in Zimbabwe Continues: Catch Up on the Story Series and Learn What’s Next

By Amanda Whitmyer on April 27, 2023

Real solutions do exist to end global hunger – and it starts with a meal. In honor of Rise Against Hunger’s 25th anniversary, we continue to celebrate the transformational impact we’ve been working to create in Zimbabwe. Through a five-year partnership with ADRA Zimbabwe and communities in Gokwe North, Zimbabwe, the Planting Seeds for Strong Communities initiative has supported long-term food security, increased school attendance and stimulated the local agriculture economy. 

Five partner schools in Zimbabwe are now cultivating school gardens, where parents and community members volunteer to grow crops and vegetables to add to students’ daily meals. Local farmers are also thriving with the climate-smart agriculture training received through the program and the access to shelling and oil-pressing machines to process crops and generate income. Read more from the program participants below and learn what’s next in Zimbabwe.

Impact Results 

By working closely with local parents, community and school leaders and program participants to develop a holistic, home-grown school garden and income-generated initiatives,  since the launch of the Planting Seeds for Strong Communities initiative, Gokwe North, Zimbabwe, has seen remarkable results. These impact results include a 35% increase in school attendance, a 183% increase in food volume for the schools and a 32% increase in participating households meeting their own food requirements during one year. Schools also provide meals up to five times each week, improving the students’ emotional, physical and social well-being. 

Program Participants

As the Deputy Headmaster for Manyuli Primary school in Zimbabwe, Godfrey has seen students and their parents’ lives transform. From local income-generating activities for parents to support their families to home-grown school gardens and a water system providing students with nourishment, the school is now self-reliant. Learn more about Godfrey’s remarkable impact.


Taurai, Headmaster of the Nenyunga Primary school, which is now considered one of the best schools in the district,  says he has seen an 80% increase in student attendance. Since participating in the program, the school has established a home-grown garden where parents volunteer to grow staple crops and vegetables and cook meals for students. Click here to watch Taurai’s video.


Siphiwe, a farmer and mother, learned how to farm sunflower crops and convert them into cooking oil using an oil-pressing machine in her community in Zimbabwe. Since Siphiwe began farming sunflowers, she can now cover her children’s school tuition fees, where they receive nourishing meals, and she has empowered many women in her community. Hear from Siphiwe in this video.


Pedro, a farmer, father and program participant, learned the Zai pit farming method. This new farming technique significantly increased his yields, and he shared this gained knowledge with other farmers in Zimbabwe. Now a leading farmer in his region, Pedro provides meals for the local primary school, his family of six and his community. Learn more about Pedro’s journey. 


Blyberg and Jacquelyne, a married couple and parents of two children, received training on crops and livestock, savings and lending schemes, and farmer market opportunities. Together, they now harvest healthy crops, sell produce at local markets and generate profits, and their children attend school and receive nutritious meals. Click here to watch Blyberg and Jacquelyne’s video. 


As the Chigariro One Village Head in Gokwe North, Zimbabwe, Nervous, a husband, father and farmer, learned Zai pit farming, poultry rearing and profiting techniques on how to scout local markets for selling produce in Zimbabwe. Nervous now produces quality harvests and sells produce at local markets, generating income to feed his family and support the community. Hear from Nervous in this video.

What’s Next?

We’re still working alongside these communities and participants, and the work to support food security and education in Gokwe North, Zimbabwe, isn’t over. In partnership with ADRA Zimbabwe, we’re working with three schools to provide a sustainable water source through borehole drilling, which creates a narrow, deep hole in the ground to extract water, to support homegrown school feeding programs. This program will also support the local farmer’s crop yields by ensuring access to sunflower, groundnut and sorghum seeds.

In addition to receiving seeds for gardening, schools are being provided with machines to produce peanut butter for additional income-generating activity, as well as WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) and nutrition training, including Participatory Health and Hygiene Education training, and the establishment of school health clubs and food fairs with demonstrations on cooking locally available foods.

Are you interested in joining the celebration in Zimbabwe? Click here to donate and help even more children on the path to food security, just like the children and community of Gokwe North, Zimbabwe.