Rona first joined Railway clinic in Kafue, Zambia with a Mothers to Mothers (M2M) program. Railway’s M2M program helps educate new mothers living with HIV how to prevent mother to child transmission.
Rona is a mother of six. Her youngest child Kiki continues to fall short of the developmental norms of children her age. Rona became interested in the DIG program at Railway Clinic so that she might learn about nutrition and how to produce her own food in order to help Kiki gain a satisfactory weight. Since joining the program, Rona has incorporated many different kinds of vegetables into her and her children’s diets. Kiki now eats mashed carrots or sweet potatoes with her porridge in the mornings. Rona also always makes sure to add whichever vegetables she and the other women in the DIG program harvest each week into her mid-day or evening meals.
Rona has become quite an exceptional gardener and leader. She first started as a new participant with very little knowledge in organic gardening techniques. She quickly mastered these new skills from Catherine and DIG’s training sessions and has now become a teacher for her community. Not only is Rona helping herself and her children becoming healthier but she is also helping her community, neighbors, and family by teaching them what she has learned. Rona supervises two community gardens in a nearby neighborhood, organized and helped develop her church’s garden to raise money for their various charity acts, and is currently teaching her mother how to helping to build a home garden.
Because of Rona’s dedication, she was voted in as the Chairwoman of Railway Clinic’s DIG and m2m Women’s Club. The women have raised enough money to open a bank account (which is no easy feat in Kafue, Zambia). With her share of the money, Rona plans on starting a bread-making business of various types, i.e. banana bread, pumpkin bread, etc.
Rona expresses her gratitude for all of the help DIG has given to her and her family, to her American friends who worked in the garden with her, and to those who continually support DIG’s work.