Saturday, March 19, 2011

Foundations for Farming

Below is a post from Luke Whitfield on Foundations for Farming (a.k.a. Farming God's Way). When we return to Zambia, Luke and I will be trying to implement this program in Chikankata. So, I thought you might find his write-up about an international conference he attended in Zimbabwe interesting.

Dear Friends,

It has been a while since our last update and so we wanted to take a few moments to fill you in with what has been going on in our lives. I, Luke, specifically would like to share about a recent trip I took to Zimbabwe to attend a week long seminar to be trained in conservation farming with a Christian ministry called Foundations for Farming. It was an amazing experience to be a part of a group that represented 16 countries including places like India, Mexico, Ukraine, Sudan and many more. One of the coolest stories was that of a very tall man name Michael from Southern Sudan. Michael shared about his dream to take what he had learned and begin teaching school children in Southern Sudan so that through the younger generation his people’s future might be a bit brighter.

I want to start by sharing some statistics. Over the past 50 years it is estimated that close to 2.3 trillion USD has been pumped into Africa in the form of aid. Africa also possesses 30% of the world’s natural resources. Sub Saharan Africa (where we are) has a great climate, bountiful rainfall, fertile soils and plenty of people to work the land. Despite these facts Africa’s total Gross Domestic Product only represents 1.3% of the world’s total. Poverty continues to grip the vast majority of the continent’s peoples resulting in Africa’s population growth exceeding agricultural production. Bottom line, Africa continues to be the hungriest and most malnourished continent on the planet.

Foundations for Farming is all about seeing Africans go from being the world’s beggars to becoming a blessing to the nations. Since the vast majority of Africa’s population are small scale farmers the vision is to teach productive farming techniques to these individuals with the net result being the production of enough food for families as well as extra income to aid in the development of economic growth. At the heart of this vision is a focus on achieving these outcomes through a heart change of the people. Based upon a Biblical perspective promoting stewardship with what God has given them the course encourages participants to farm on time, at a high standard, no wastage and most importantly with joy! This is a very simple explanation of what Foundation for Farming is all about and we would encourage you to take a second and learn more about this amazing and revolutionary ministry by visiting their website at: .

So why are we sharing all this with you? As we detailed in our February update, 2012 will see some major changes in our ministry focus. Upon our return to Zambia in January of 2012 we will be moving down to the rural area of Chikankata to begin full time work assisting the chief of that area in expanding the Kingdom of God amongst her people. As we have planned for this shift one of the unanswered questions has been what would be the best way to enter into the community and gain the trust of the Tonga people. After my trip to Zimbabwe we feel like Foundations for Farming is God’s answer to that question. Our hope is that as we are able to train the people of Chikankata to be more productive and profitable in agriculture a door will be opened to share Gospel of Jesus Christ.

We will be sharing many more of the details surrounding this shift in the months to come and are excited about this open door God has provided us with to reach the lost in Chikankata. Again thanks for your continued support and prayers. We love and miss you all dearly and are looking forward to reconnecting upon our return to the States in July 2011.


Luke (for the fam)

1 comment:

Christy said...

This sounds AMAZING. I learned so much in just that little post and am really excited to hear more!