I Am Because We Are

“We have an African saying that, ‘I am because we are.’ And everybody in the community can go ask anyone of them, ‘Hey I want you to come and teach me how to do pruning on my farm,’ and they feel proud that they are delivering service to the community.” – Daniel Banuoku, CIKOD (Centre for Indigenous Knowledge and Organisational Development) Program Director.

In this video, watch how women farmers are organizing themselves and helping each other by sharing their experiences and by restoring native seeds. Also hear from Groundswell’s partners in the field as they work to protect indigenous seeds and build on the existing capacities of farmers and the systems they already use.

Groundswell is one of the “true faith” organizations fighting corporate control in Africa and trying to re-establish a rightful place for people in relation to their own culture and resources. Land is a big problem; however it is just as well to say soil fertility is the African problem.

Companies like Monsanto are pushing industrial agriculture with its dependence on patented seeds and chemical inputs and to further exploit companies across Africa for advantages in world trade, where they can reap huge profits on the backs of smallholders. They especially target countries in the “underdeveloped world” under the guise of “assisting development” in countries that can’t feed themselves and have to seek food and resources cheaply.

US-backed food corporations pressuring for short term high-tech solutions that support their own financial gain but that will further deplete natural soil fertility are beginning to face a push-back by indigenous people.

African people want to “be what they are!” They are claiming human rights violations and asserting their own freedom to employ more traditional means to balance nutrient flows and restore natural social and ecological farmland integrity.

They want to apply E. F. Schumacher’s formula of appropriate technology, intrinsic human enterprise (labor), and the educated new insight into ecological balance to regain the abundance lost through generations of imperialistic exploitation and war. Groundswell is assisting them. We at GoodFood World believe in what they are doing.

Sadly ruthless chemical corporations like Monsanto, assisted by the Gates Foundation, and others similar, such as nonprofits with tax-protected wealth built on technocracy and partnering with big business, stand against them.

Learn more about Groundswell.