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ABINET Learning Exchange

Seeds of Hope is recognized as a global leader in BioSand Filter (BSF) fabrication. To ensure the greatest benefit to the global community, we recently invited partners, collaborating organizations and other stakeholders to our Ndola Resource Center, to participate in the 2013 Africa Biosand Filter Implementers Network (ABINET) Learning Exchange. The Exchange is a week-long opportunity for BSF implementers and our own Water Expertise and Training Center staff to share experiences and solutions with implementers from other African countries, such as Ethiopia, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Malawi, and Zambia. ABINET ParticipantsThe ABINET Learning Exchange exemplifies many of Seeds of Hope’s ideals, such as our commitment to growth, forward thinking, and unity in the field. This year, attendees learned about the newest BSF technology and household water treatment initiatives worldwide. Also, we have pioneered a large-scale factory model which we shared with those attending, in addition to providing technical consulting support, leadership and implementation training, education resources, and networking services to NGOs, government agencies and community groups involved in water and sanitation. This year’s ABINET Learning Exchange was a rich time of cross-pollinating and networking which will strengthen water treatment initiatives throughout the world.


Agriculture: 3 Crop Model

Last year, Seeds of Hope’s Agriculture Department (AG) graduated 30 students from its first-ever “Farming as a Business” class. Students took part in rigorous in-field and classroom training, and now have the skills either to begin farming cooperatives with the Zambian government, or to establish their own small scale farms. Of course, ongoing support and consultation is key to success when new skills are being used for the first time in the real world, so each week since, members of our AG staff have visited graduates to offer both. A handful of the graduates have even worked so well with our staff, and shown such diligence and competence, that we have hired them for the SoHIP Farm.Helen

SoHIP Farm is always working to improve production and sustainability. Right now, we’re conducting research in the three-crop model, a strategy of crop rotation based on growth time. Ideally, farming cooperatives want to always be harvesting something, so there is never a major delay in production, or dip in income. Here’s an example of how it works: one of our research groups has planted green beans, carrots, and tomatoes. If everything goes well, once the green beans are harvested, the carrots will be coming, and once those are picked, the tomatoes will be ready. Then the cycle will repeat with different crops, based on seasonal rotation.

This research comes alongside a concentrated effort to maintain detailed profit-vs-loss records, both as part of training for business students, and to track internal progress, in an effort to become completely self-sustaining.


Distinguished by a Holistic Approach

Seeds of Hope works to reverse the downward spiral of poverty by empowering Africans through hope and a strategy of holistic development. This approach is based on the idea that lasting, long-term growth requires simultaneous efforts in multiple interrelated areas. We have seen, for example, that poverty continues in Zambia because of three things: unsafe water, malnutrition, and the inability to secure income. To address only one of those areas would improve the situation temporarily, but the other two would creep in. For people to truly thrive, each of these areas requires attention in symphony with the others.

Seeds of Hope’s pioneering holistic approach includes programs focused on water, sanitation, health education, agriculture, vocational training, and business development. This approach culminates at our Ndola Resource Center, which serves as a community hub for inspiration, opportunity, and development. Here, we address the many needs of the community by demonstrating innovative solutions, and through vocational skills classes, laboratory access for quality testing, health education workshops, agriculture training, and water intervention. Seeds of Hope is teaching people—both local and international—to think holistically about the layers of issues and solutions, and how to best implement lasting, life-saving changes.

To find out more about SoHIP’s holistic approach, or the Ndola Resource Center, go to: www.sohip.org/solutions

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Champion Spotlight: Mountainbrook Community Church

MB onlySeeds of Hope would like to highlight Mountainbrook Community Church for their continuous support! A SoHIP Champion, Mountainbrook has supported Seeds of Hope for nearly a decade from California’s central coast. Mountainbrook’s support includes sending teams to Zambia, running holiday campaigns, and showcasing SoHIP displays in their church foyer. Furthermore, Mountainbrook’s faithful friendship and support have helped bring clean water to over 5,000 Zambians, through the sponsorship of five water wells, 445 BioSand Filters, three support teams, a drill rig, and two shipping containers packed with necessary items for SoHIP Zambia. In fact, Mountainbrook is currently packing a third shipping container, filled with over 275 bicycles, as well as computers and sewing and drilling supplies. Thank you, Mountainbrook Community Church, for your cheerful giving. It is changing communities and saving lives.

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