Lishe Bora partners with families to improve children’s health and family income. The organization runs a demonstration FAITH (Food Always In The Home) organic vegetable garden and helps families start their own gardens. They also organize Village Community Banks and provide management consulting to a community-run water distribution system.
To achieve financial self-reliance Lishe Bora sells organic vegetables, raises, and is opening an organic farm and eco-lodge.
Team: Teodori, Anna, and Eliza
Lishe Bora works primarily in the villages of Mkyashi and Lasso on Mount Kilimanjaro. Mkyashi is the home of the first coffee trees ever planted in Tanzania and today most residents still make their living growing coffee and bananas. Coffee provides money for school fees and supplies and bananas are a year-round source of sustenance. Lishe Bora partners with two primary schools, Mkyashi Primary School and Kilema Primary School, to grow vegetables for school lunches and improve the students’ sanitation practices.
Mkyashi and Lasso are home to the Chagga tribe who have inhabited the area for over 1,000 years. A water distribution system improves the efficiency of farm and livestock projects. Organic vegetable gardens provide vitamins and nutrients to supplement the local diet. Community banking provides credit and emergency funding to help families maintain farms, keep children in school, and pay medical bills.
Mary Andrea Shayo is the manager of Lishe Bora. She was born in raised on Mount Kilimanjaro in the same community she works in today. After studying cooking at Maua Seminary Vocational School Mary ran a number of small business before running the garden shop. She loves growing new vegetables and using her cooking background to show people new ways of eating them. When she’s not at work she tries to spend as much time as possible with her six year old daughter Sessi and her newborn son Goodluck.
Lishe Bora first identified water access as an urgent community need in 2013. Since then they have collaborated with community members and local government to develop a community-led water distribution system. In addition to improving water infrastructure Lishe Bora also assists a committee to manage the system’s accounting and control processes.
Lishe Bora works with families to build organic vegetable gardens designed to provide fresh, organic, vegetables throughout the year. The team maintains a demonstration garden, builds gardens with families and contributes inputs like compost, foliar sprays, and seedlings. They mentor families to encourage best-practices and sustainability.
Lishe Bora arranges training and provides operational support for groups of gardeners to start banking programs together. The groups receive training in planning, operating, and maintaining small businesses and a community lending circle. Then they meet weekly to make deposits, distribute loans, and share challenges with each other.