Apr 3, 2018
Hilton Davids, founder of the Vlottenburg Community Organisation (VCO) is full of hope. Not only does his organisation assists more than 80 children in the Wesbank area in Kuils River, Western Cape daily, he also looks after the food garden established in partnership with Shoprite at Rainbow Primary, the school across the road from the organisation.
- Hilton Davids, founder of the Vlottenburg Community Organisation (VCO)
According to Hilton none of the VCO’s achievements would have been possible without the Shoprite Group's support:
Spinach, beetroot, leeks, lettuce, cabbage and carrots are among the crops being grown in the garden, which also contain herbs like rosemary, marjoram, wild wormwood and wild garlic. In drought-stricken Cape Town, the garden, where seedlings were planted at the beginning of the year, is being watered from a borehole.
Its beauty is as a result of its novel design in which Shoprite’s partner, Urban Harvest, deliberately moved away from the grid-style garden design. Instead a three-dimensional mandala design of concentric circles was decided on, adding to the garden’s overall aesthetic appeal. The word mandala is Sanskrit for “circle” and this design was chosen for its eye-catching beauty and the fact that it acts like a traffic circle directing the flow of people so that it does not feel crowded. Visitors to the garden also get maximum enjoyment from it.
The vegetables in the garden are used to feed the children benefiting from VCO initiatives. It also provides fresh produce for the feeding scheme at Rainbow Primary.
- Hilton Davids
The children from the school and organisation are encouraged to work in the garden with the hope that they will take the gardening skills they have acquired back to their homes to continue gardening there.
One faithful volunteer from the community, Gerald Bezuidenhout, arrives early each morning to lovingly tend to the garden. Work in the garden is a labour of love for this retired farm worker, who worked on wine farms around Stellenbosch.
- Gerald Bezuidenhout, volunteer