With the onslaught of the Covid-19 pandemic, there was an even more urgent need to shore up food security for poor and vulnerable urban households. This is a focus point for Namibia's Build Back Better (BBB) urban agriculture project. The BBB urban agriculture project is a multi-stakeholder partnership established by the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Land Reform, funded by the Government of Japan and jointly implemented through the UNDP Namibia and the local governments from four regions in Namibia. Several urban garden schemes have been implemented through the BBB urban agriculture project in four regions (Erongo, Hardap, Kavango East and Khomas).
Auguste Kankondi is one of the beneficiaries from Farm Okukuna, an urban municipal land in Goreangab, Windhoek city. The Municipal Council of Windhoek has granted the land solely for the urban garden project and an agricultural training centre for the community.
'When I started at farm Okukuna, I knew only a few things about farming because we used to grow Mahangu (Millet) back home in Okahao. But I did not know much about growing vegetables or herbs. Farm Okukuna gave us training on making organic compost and how to grow different types of vegetables in winter and summer.'
Urban agriculture is not a novel concept. It has been established as one of the measures helping the poor and vulnerable people in urban areas cope with food scarcity and hunger by growing crops in their backyards. Urban gardening, or "urban agriculture" or "urban farming," is an umbrella term for the process of growing crops and plants of all types and varieties in an urban or peri-urban environment.
‘'I became excited as I was getting training at farm Okukuna. I started practising what I had learned with the small space in my house in the Goreangab location. I started very small, but I started slowly expanding and expanding my garden to the front side of the house. I have succeeded in growing spinach, beetroot, carrots, and herbs to feed my four children aged between 19 and 4 years old. I even harvested enough vegetables to sell to some of my neighbours at a low price.'