We are asking for help! We have managed to get hold of a tractor and a square hay baler we can borrow and we have spoken to several farmers who are very happy for us to come to cut and collect hay BUT the needles on the baler are broken and cost R2000 each!
We are on a deadline as well as once the rain comes in August we lose our window for hay. Right now is the best time to cut and bale hay for our buildings! If we miss our window we will have to wait 12 months before we can cut again.
We need 3000 bales to be able to build all of the structures that we want to. In order to get all of this done in time before the rain starts, and in a good seed sowing season we need to move quickly and we are wanting to raise R10,000 to speed things up, buy fuel for the tractor, do some maintenance on the baler, so that we can bale 3000 bales for the community centre, house, daycare centre and gardens all before the rain gets here.
We are finally at a point where we can build a house in the village. Ian has long felt that it is more effective to be in the village but has not felt the freedom to do so. Now Bruce and his family are here it is more viable option and we are excited to be planning a straw bale house (to see why straw bale check out our natural building blog) and have already started clearing the ground to make it happen.
Two years ago Ian wanted to build a community centre in the village. It was going to be a place for training, extra lessons, gatherings, meetings, parties and anything else that is needed. He wanted to build it to an earthship design but the tyre supply dried up and he couldn't complete the job. Using his groundwork we will build the rest of the centre with straw bales and realise his vision.
A new project at a new location is underway. A Daycare centre to take care of the children of farmworkers on several farms to the south west of Ermelo. A pastor has been teaching Sunday school here for nearly 10 years and wants to open a daycare centre to care for these youngsters on a longer term basis. There are already around 50 children that would attend. See more on our blog "Expanding Love Africa Youth's Work"
As part of our commitment to improve food security in the village we want to start straw bale gardens in each yard. These gardens mitigate the need for top soil which is scarce, sequester water much more effectively and over time will actually contribute to the building up of the soil in the village which will help stop desertification, improve water retention and provide freshly grown food for each family.
Our window to collect hay is closing we need to get the hay before the rain comes. Can you help?