Gugulethu Urban Farming Initiative (GUFI)
Background of the case study area
Case study organization: Gugulethu urban food forest initiative (GUFFI)
GUFFI is an organisation that is new and is a product of Covid-19. It came out of the partnership between GgugulethuCAN and SeaboardCAN. Gugulethu urban food forest initiative (GUFFI) is a farming initiative that started in 2020 during the Covid-19 lockdown, farmers of Gugulethu came together to create the farming initiative (SeaboardCan, 2021). The Gugulethu urban farming initiative started through Vuyani Qamata who is the coordinator of the farming initiative. He is the leading force behind the food gardens growing in Gugulethu households’. Vuyani Qamata gets assistance from NGOs, these organisations help him and the farmers with access to funding and tools to get the food gardens established. Vuyani has other community farmers that are helping him to maintain and reach their vision of GUFFI “turning Gugulethu into a food forest”. The Gugulethu urban food forest initiative is coordinating within Gugulethu and its neighbouring community. GUFFI has established backyard and school gardens so that the local community can become self-sufficient and eat nutritious food.
According to Vuyani Qamata (2020) who is the initiative coordinator the Gugulethu urban farming initiative is aimed at mobilising the community to change Gugulethu into a food forest. They developed a strategy to establish gardens using organic produce, because residents of the township depend exclusively on fruit and vegetables purchased from nearby shops or within the township. This provides food stability to many homes, allowing them to eat healthier. GUFFI is an initiative that uses food gardens to transform ordinary locations into exceptional spaces. The objective of GUFFI is to green Gugulethu, create livelihoods for their community and to encourage wellness (GUFFI Facebook page, 2021). This Covid-19 outbreak brought about a new charity movement and formed new solidarity partnerships. GUFFI partnered with community kitchens around Gugulethu that started operating during Covid-19. The initiative has ensured that every soup/community kitchen has a food garden. These food gardens are created to ensure food security and to create a healthy living cycle. Creating food gardens is done with the goal that it will feed into the upkeep of the kitchen with a well-balanced diet (GUFFI Facebook page, 2020). This helps to bring nutritious meals to the kitchen.