NORKAMA ORGANIC GARDEN
Norkama Organic Garden
Market Garden Project in Burkina Faso’s Norkama Village Empowers Local Women
Since 2011, Sarama has held positive local relationships and has backed numerous community-led projects in the village of Norkama, situated nearby the Company’s Sanutura Gold Project.
The establishment of the Norkama Organic Community Garden in 2013, located within the Sanutura Project Camp, originated with three simple goals: to create an open, freely accessible space that grows organic produce, to create jobs through agriculture and land care, and to provide a natural and sustainable food resource for surrounding communities.
In addition to land care education, Sarama’s efforts to source all seed and garden supplies within Burkina Faso extends to organic best practice.
Sarama’s CEO Andrew Dinning stated, “We buy our garden seed from Ouagadougou, and proactively target suppliers who do not genetically modify the seed to assure we maintain our organic status. We currently have crops of eggplant, tomatoes, onions, okra, spinach, banana, avocado, cabbage, papaya and pineapple – and make compost with any wastage.”
In 2016, as part of an effort to engage strong participation from local women and promote sustainable crop production, Sarama called on the help of an experienced agronomist to deliver hands on training focused on ecological methods of sowing, growing and treating plants.
An ongoing planting program was focused on enabling the seasonal use of nutritious food sources and natural remedies. This included the planting of tobacco plants and local neem trees to naturally repel parasites and insects – handy for both those farming the garden and the workers using the adjacent field camp, as well as supporting the 100% organic approach.
In 2021, Sarama Resources remains closely engaged with the project, undertaking significant rejuvenation efforts to lift production in anticipation of recommencing field works at the Sanutura Project.
Overall, the garden remains a mutually beneficial project between Sarama and the greater community of Norkama. The initiative provides an opportunity to develop local agricultural capacity, with the added bonus of bolstering camp supplies for people on the ground and contributes key ingredients to the Norkama School Food Program, another Sarama led social initiative.