Gbarnga, Liberia Food Security Initiative Fund

Gbarnga, Liberia Food Security Initiative Fund

From First United Methodist Church of Bryan

The purpose of the initiative is to empower the Gbarnga School of Theology and the Tubman Gray High School to build their capacities for food security for their communities.

First United Methodist Church of Bryan

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Sponsored by the West District of the Texas Conference

West District of the Texas Conference to FUMC Bryan

The Gbarnga School of Theology (GST) and William V. S. Tubman Gray United Methodist School (T-Gray) Food Security Initiative is an agriculture project which seeks to provide food for the students and staff of the two institutions to enhance their learning and teaching conditions. It will also provide students with the opportunity to acquire agricultural skills along with their regular learnings to empower them to produce their own food and live as responsible and food-secured citizens.

The purpose of the initiative is to empower the Gbarnga School of Theology and the Tubman Gray High School to build their capacities for food security for their communities. It will further create a new model for contextual learning in communities that are hard pressed by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic by the high level of vulnerability to food insecurity.

GST and T-Gray are located in a community with a lot of fertile land that is under-utilized; a community like many other places in Liberia where the people rely heavily on the importation of rice which is the national staple. There is no price control system as individual importers can set their own prices without much reprimand from the government. With the advent of COVID-19, the shortage of rice and its high cost have intensified the vulnerability of the common people and the communities from which our students come. This poses a serious threat to the effectiveness of the ministries of our institutions as our students are amongst the most vulnerable population in terms of food security. This initiative is intended to address this threat by developing a new model for creative and contextual education by utilizing the land we have to produce food for our communities.

Programmatic Activities: The Gbarnga School of Theology and Tubman Gray Food Security Initiative will respond to this food insecurity in our communities by initially cultivating 70 acres of land to produce rice and essential vegetable and other crops. 60 acres will be planted with rice and 10 acres with vegetables and other crops. Through the production process, the initiative will create space for students to learn practical skills that they can utilize in the future ministries. It will further serve as a model for intentional contextual education for the church and the larger community. The initiative will in this way serve as catalyst for the church in the fulfillment of its mission amongst the younger generation of leaders.

The Food Security Initiative will be operated by a project team with members from the Gbarnga School of Theology and Tubman Gray as a partnership for food security, community outreach, contextual human resource development efforts and COVID-19 response efforts. An agriculture coordinator will be seconded to provide leadership for the project. The coordinator will work along with a team of administrators comprising of members of project team to provide leadership (monitoring, evaluating, and supervising, etc.) for the project. We are confident that with this team in place, the project will fulfill its desired purpose.

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