Updated: Sep 21
The Philippi Urban Agriculture Academy (PUAA), which broke ground in 2017 with a vision to transform the lives of local communities through sustainable agriculture, is now celebrating its first year of remarkable achievements. What started as a construction site has blossomed into a fully operational agricultural academy, creating employment opportunities and driving community development in the heart of Philippi.
Since its inception, the academy has not only nurtured organic crops but also the dreams of the local population. With a focus on education and empowerment, the academy has provided training and employment opportunities to 11 beneficiaries from the Philippi community. The success story is exemplified by the academy's first Emerging Farmer, a female graduate with a National Diploma in Crop Production from Fort Cox College of Agriculture in the Eastern Cape.
But the academy's impact extends far beyond its graduates. It has formed partnerships with educational institutions such as CPUT and Elsenberg Agricultural School, employing graduates to bridge the gap between theory and practical experience.
Today, the PUAA boasts four operational business units, each contributing to its mission of sustainable agriculture:
Crop Production Business Unit: With 64 sub-irrigated growing beds, this unit produces pure organic crops year-round.
Seedling Production Business Unit: A 300m2 tunnel houses 172,000 seedlings that not only supply the academy but also local garden markets and the public.
Vermi-Tea Business Unit: In collaboration with Waste 2 Food, the academy generates Vermi-Tea, a natural herbicide and pesticide, by processing organic waste through earthworm composting. This environmentally friendly initiative has found favor with local garden markets and the public.
Community Garden and Market Stalls Business Unit: This 800m2 parcel of unused land is being transformed into 240 organically composted growing beds. It aims to train local residents in community garden-farming methodologies, empowering them to start their own community gardens.
The PUAA is not just about cultivation; it's about cultivation of a community. It's a beacon of hope for job creation and community development in Philippi. Visitors and investors alike are invited to witness the academy's success firsthand.
As part of their commitment to sustainable agriculture, the academy offers organic crop orders. You can place orders for veggie-boxes or full wholesale orders of their pure organic crops by sending an email to email@example.com.
In a world searching for sustainable solutions, the PUAA stands as a shining example of how agriculture can be a powerful catalyst for change in local communities, nurturing both crops and dreams in its journey of growth.