How Success Will Be Measured with the Greenhouse Project

Training in specific agricultural techniques and greenhouse maintenance will be documented through a pictorial manual (note that illiteracy is high). 

Trainees will prove their knowledge by setting up and maintaining greenhouses properly.  This will be documented through photos and videos and text write-up posted on this page

The proof of having learned the techniques will come through the high yield results of corn, beans, and other vegetables that are determined during needs assessments (Weeks 1-2). 

Federico’s corn yield at another remote indigenous village in Guatemala
Federico with fully grown black beans at another remote indigenous village in Guatemala

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Documentation of livelihood will be made through photos/videos as well as testimonials that will be posted on www.sowingops.org.

Participants will report experiences with food insecurity at the beginning and after the 2-mo. intensive in-class and on-the-job training from the expert agronomist.

We will weigh each member of the participating families in March, in April, and six months later. 

Lety speaking with women in the village of Chajmaic, August 2020

In addition, we will we conduct a pre- and post- verbal survey (at the beginning and at the end of the project, and then again in six months and again in one year) for each adult, listing responses for each member of the family on a form with numerical measurements (from 1 to 10) for symptoms of malnutrition and sufficient food, conducted by a medical professional and based on medical statistics from the local municipality, Fray Bartolomé de las Casas:  These include sense of hunger, stomachache, fatigue, dizziness, muscle weakness, infections and delayed healing.

We will say that we are collecting this information for people who are funding the project so that they see the benefit of their funding.

The ranking, from 1 to 10, will be with 10 being the worst possible situation – completely unbearable – and with 1 being acceptable.

How Climate Change Affects Chajmaic’s Food Insecurity and Sowing Opportunities’ Agricultural Solution

Extreme conditions in Central America are leading to food insecurity and lack of employment, which in some cases, causes youth to flee the region, seeking work elsewhere.

The dry corridor has been affected by climate change and during the dry season, crops grown on the land can shrivel, causing many young men to leave to find work elsewhere.

Climate Change Refugees – dry corridor, ABC News Prime, 1.30 mins
Climate Change Refugees – the crops have shriveled, ABC News Prime, .58 mins

During the rainy season, hurricanes that cause flooding, affect passability of highways and access to agricultural regions, which affects the supply chain and increases prices, in addition to increasing unemployment, in remote areas of Guatemala.

Photo source: Relato (Guatemala), November 6, 2020

A solution is having remote villages grow their own food, but flooding has created the necessity for innovative and strategic solutions, such as greenhouse farming in elevated areas.  

In March 2022, Sowing Opportunities is bringing an expert agricultural engineer to the village of Chajmaic, Guatemala to do this work with the people, in conjunction with results of a needs assessment.  Details of this upcoming journey are at this link.

Sowing Opportunities’ expert agricultural engineer, Federico Arriola Cuéllar, has a PhD and 40years of experience, including specialized training in Israel, and multiple examples of proven success and quick results.  Federico has created a replicable and functional model that has been validated in all microclimates and altitudes of Guatemala, Mexico and Honduras.

Federico’s model includes “substrates, nutrients, water resources and fertilization of plants among others, which in a correct combination has the capacity to raise up to 1000% the ordinary annual production of the most important crops.” (Source: Federico’s document “Prog. para Erradicar la Desnutricion Ciclilca en Guatemala y el Mundo”)

Photo source: Federico Arriola Cuéllar document, Prog. para Erradicar la Desnutricion Ciclilca en Guatemala y el Mundo

Sowing Opportunities’ agricultural engineer, Federico’s model “is aligned with 6 of the 8 Millennium Development Goals, systematically combining a series of methodologies (The greenhouse concept, organoponics, Spanish plasticiculture, Israeli drip irrigation and Brazilian nutrition) seeking low-cost application and using local resources from wherever it is situated, respecting the food preferences of each family to meet the objective that anyone can carry it out.”  According to Federico, this system “allows the production of any product in any season. This means that it is possible to meet market demands all year round, regardless of climatic factors.”

Carrots grown by Federico’s team in another area of Guatemala (Photo source: Prog. para Erradicar la Desnutricion Ciclilca en Guatemala y el Mundo)

Malden Garden Supports Building Greenhouses in Guatemala

Malden Garden Supports Building Greenhouses in Guatemala

Growing and sharing our local food to make an impact around the world!

Last year’s  “World Water Day” (March 2021) we decided to celebrate our contributions to water availability in Chajmaic by launching a sustainable farming campaign with the intention of raising funds for our next project, Sol y Tierra Sustainable Greenhouse Farming in Chajmaic.

Fast forward almost a year, February 2022, our team in Guatemala is getting ready to travel to Chajmaic, Guatemala to start the Project next month!

Read the initial article highlighting the project and needs of Chajmaic and see our wonderful journey of creating a Greenhouse right here in Malden, MA and how we used our locally grown vegetables and ornamental plants to raise funds to launch the project.

Our journey

Garden plants ready for a new home

Plants for Sale to Benefit the Village of Chajmaic, Guatemala

Read post

Farmer’s markets

Successful season

Read post

Earth Day 2021

Plants for Sale to Benefit the Village of Chajmaic, Guatemala

Read post

Garden plants ready for a new home

Plants for Sale to Benefit the Village of Chajmaic, Guatemala

Read post

Indoor Sales

Brightening offices spaces around town!

Read post

 Phase 1A: Pilot project with individual greenhouses (2022)

Adopt a Greenhouse

Your gift will cover the construction cost for 1 Greenhouse

Adopt a Greenhouse
Corporate Matching Program

Double your impact by taking advantage of matching gift programs at your workplace

Greenhouse Education & Tools

Your gift will support the Greenhouse farming workshop which will teach a team the basics of Greenhouse farming, care of produce and local commerce

Grocery Bag

Feeds 1 person for 1 Month in the village of Chajmaic, Guatemala.

Grocery Bag: 1 bottle of oil, 1 bag of salt,25 lbs. corn, 5 lbs. of beans, 2 packages of Incaparina

 

Indigenous Mayan artisanal Crafts

We are very excited to tell you about an opportunity to give a beautiful gift to your loved one or yourself while supporting Sowing Opportunities sustainability projects as well as indigenous Mayan artisans.

Now you can purchase beautiful handcrafted Mayan artwork at TheGallery@57. All the pieces are skillfully created by indigenous Mayan artisans. Your purchase of these goods directly benefits both the artisans through Guatemalan Fair Trade as well as Sowing Opportunities. Contact for questions and direct donations.

Click to enlarge image –

Woven Button-Down Shirts – all shirts shown are long sleeve.


Ornaments

 


Ponchos

Woven chenille ponchos – various colors


Dreamcatchers


Table Runners


Wallets


Bracelets


Scarves

Gorgeous woven chenille scarves in luscious colors – perfect to stay warm in the New England winter

 


Belts

Summer 2021 Plants & Sustainability Project

Melrose Farmers’ Market video, promoting Sowing Opportunities!

The Melrose Farmers’ Market is done for the season, but…

Sowing Opportunities, is offering beautifully arranged plants for donation. These begonias can be grown on your window sill during the winter, brightening your house, and make a fine gift! All proceeds directly benefit an #indigenous village in #Guatemala. Interested? Send a DM or email fern.sowingops@gmail.com

 


 

Earth Day 2021 at The Gallery@57. See event photos and videos here.

Successful Malden Summer Festival (June 26, 2021). > Read More 
Are you local and need plant seedlings? Join us at one of our Sustainable Farming fundraisers this Summer!

Sowing Opportunities is focused on the village of Chajmaic, Guatemala developing greenhouse agriculture for food security and livelihood.
See how we use the local impact to make a difference. > Read Neighborhood View article

If you don’t have a yard, or if you can’t come to the event, let us know . . . you can still donate and get a plant!

 

Sowing Opportunities is focused on the village of Chajmaic, Guatemala developing greenhouse agriculture for food security and livelihood.

See Sowing Opportunities’ recent Neighborhood View article > Read Full Post