The conditions facing the residents of Sierra Leone are dire — ravished in the past year by the Ebola outbreak, and this year facing mass starvation as agricultural operations all but ceased for many months and food is in short supply.
In recent months, Bread and Water for Africa® has been providing our partner there, Faith Healing Development Organization (FHDO) , with emergency food so hungry children, women and men will at least have something to eat today.
But what about tomorrow?
For FHDO Executive Director Frances Mambu, who stands today on a fallow 100-acre field of nothing but hard, dry dirt, his “field of dreams” is not a baseball diamond, but something much more important – a life-saving field of rice.
That is why Bread and Water for Africa® is asking for your help today – to help us purchase a very specialized piece of equipment unfamiliar to most Americans, a combine rice harvester, which would make the land much more productive.
A combine harvester, or simply combine, is a machine that harvests grain crops. The machine “combines” three separate harvesting operations – reaping, threshing and winnowing into a single process. However, unlike the huge combines you would see on large farms in the United States, a combine designed specifically for rice is much smaller and greatly increases productivity of the rice fields.
The cost of a rice combine is not cheap – $45,000 – but it’s not out of reach either. Thanks to a generous donor who is matching grant money dollar for dollar towards our goal of raising the funds necessary for this ultimately life-saving piece of farm equipment, the value of your gift of $100, $50 or $25 will go twice as far.
Rev. Mambu will be able to significantly increase rice production on the land – currently at 1,200 pounds per acre – through the purchase of the piece of farm equipment.
In addition, with the development of an irrigation system already in the works, the rice plantation would be able to produce crops three times per year, including during the dry season, thereby more than doubling the land’s annual yield.
For right now, however, time is of the essence as the rainy season in Sierra Leone is only a few short weeks away.
Bread and Water for Africa® has been able to provide thousands of pounds of rice for emergency food assistance in the country, but a rice harvester combine would help to feed thousands not for a day, a week, or even a month, but for years to come.
Don’t let this be a missed opportunity for those who have already suffered so much.
This is your chance to “double your dollar” as we hope to be able to help Rev. Mambu double, triple or even higher the production on FHDO’s rice farm.
The time is now! Please contribute today!