Robertson, Western Cape, South Africa:
At the foot of the majestic Langeberg Mountains lies Buitenstekloof Farm, a place of great scenic beauty and diversity. Proprietors Johan and Marie Fourie have their hands full running the farm in addition to directing a branch of Iris Global’s ministry school called the Father’s House. Through their business and ministry, Johan and Marie support projects and efforts that uplift and provide for those less fortunate. They focus on healing through a family orientated community and also communicating to the individual that he or she is special and unique. They support faith groups and local, national and international outreach actions that focus on bringing new hope and life to broken communities.
The Fouries have planted 10 hectares of pomegranates on their farm. Their current challenge is that the farm is not producing sufficient funds to invest in optimal care for the crop. In an effort to support the farm and the community, Clayton Mare has started an irrigation project that will be in development during this upcoming growing season. The focus is to conserve and filter water for the pomegranate trees. The goal is to produce a better yield of pomegranates in 2017.
The first step is to lodge the dam using gabions (cages filled with rocks). Installing a new filter will also be necessary to supply adequate water for the trees. Unfiltered water blocks up the dripper pipes used to irrigate the pomegranates. A new filter is vital for the next growing season, as the plants cannot get sufficient water from continually clogged dripper pipes. The cost of the new filter is R84,000 (about $5,400). The filter is the only outstanding cost for this project. The gabions for the dam have already been purchased and are currently being lodged into the dam.
Rye grass seed has also been purchased to plant and grow for Johan’s cows so that they have food to graze on other than what grows between the crops. The plan is to sow 12 hectares of rye grass for the cows. The cows provide the manure necessary to naturally fertilize the crops. Manure also helps create quality top soil to properly nourish the trees.
Clayton is designing the irrigation solution. He is currently investing his time helping Johan with the pomegranates in addition to managing his own farm. Clayton has successfully grown and harvested pomegranates for many seasons on his family’s farm in the Klein Karoo. He has a degree in agriculture and is very knowledgeable regarding the proper care of pomegranate trees during their growing and harvest seasons.
The goal of this project is not only to create a system that is sustainable and environmentally responsible, but also to create a culture focused on investing in the spiritual growth of the community. We are trusting for provision and favor on this project. We believe that the purpose fits into part of a much greater cosmic plan!
If you are interested in supporting the irrigation project, please contact me (ashley@empathstudios) or use one of the following options:
- Contribute directly through PayPal
^^BE SURE TO SPECIFY THE PROJECT YOU ARE SUPPORTING^^
2 Corinthians 9:10-15
“He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God. For the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God. By their approval of this service, they will glorify God because of your submission that comes from your confession of the gospel of Christ, and the generosity of your contribution for them and for all others, while they long for you and pray for you, because of the surpassing grace of God upon you. Thanks be to God for His inexpressible gift!”