Lucille Otieno is what we call a true matriarch. She is a mother, grand mother, and great grandmother several times over and has been the primary provider for her large family for several years. Due to several unfortunate circumstances, Lucille supports two of her granddaughters, Selena and Florence, as well as all of their children, each of whom have found refuge in her small home.
Lucille is a small scale farmer by tradition. She got involved with DIG because of a walk she took one day. She was passing by the DIG/LCA Hospital Garden when she noticed a curious heap of grass, eggshells, and kitchen waste on the ground by the fence. In the weeks that followed she would pass by and notice how the mound of waste was changing. Some things got added, some things decomposed. She also noticed how vibrant the demonstration garden was behind the fence and how its kale grew straight and strong unlike her small wilting leaves at home. Out of curiosity, one day she went inside the fence and asked what was happening there. Tobias, one of DIG’s program leaders and local facilitators (translating in the video below), told her about the DIG project. He explained how DIG practiced organic agriculture and climate resilient planning. He shared how the LCA garden was used as a space for the community to learn new techniques that could help them at home. It wasn’t long before Lucille joined the program.
Lucille graduated from DIG’s Farmer Field School with flying colors and immediately started to convert some of her land into a diverse Home Garden. She even got her son, Fred, and nephew, Vincent, to train with DIG. We were so impressed with Vincent’s progress and enthusiasm that we trained and hired him as a Local DIG Facilitator.
Teaching her granddaughters and daughter’s in law how to garden, Lucille, has been able to transform most of her land for consumption. Her family is now able to all eat from their garden which feeds 10 of her great grand children!
Talk about the power of a single Home Garden! This is why these projects are so important and DIG makes sure they are always a component of our program. Lucille’s garden was paid for by an everyday DIG supporter through a $100 Home Garden donation. Today, through that Home Garden, she is able to not only feed herself but her children, grand children and great grandchildren…and she loves her new compost heap.
Support another DIG family by purchasing a Home Garden from the DIG Gift Garden Today