No More Hunger Ministry
Malnutrition is prevalent in many parts of Belize due to lack of education around the importance of a balanced diet, as well as the fact that high-density nutritional foods tend to be more expensive. Malnutrition can lead to lifelong chronic conditions and is prevalent in 18% of our Belizean children under five years old, though the most affected areas estimate as many as 44% of children experience stunted growth. It is important for the health of families to learn how to provide nutritious meals, including rich vegetables, nuts and healthy protein sources into their diet.
To help build both nutrition and income opportunities we have started planting gardens in backyards around our community, introducing families to nutritious vegetables in a self-sustaining manner. Families are provided with seeds, starters and instructions on how to grow and harvest the vegetables. Practical recipes are also provided to families to help integrate the new foods into daily routine.
Broiler Chicken Ministry
This new farming program exists in just one area now, though all areas of our community would benefit. The broiler chicken ministry consists first of the construction of a chicken coop. The participating family is then provided with fifty chicks and feed for the entire life span of the bird. The family is responsible for feeding and caring for the chicks until the seventh week when the chicks are ready for harvest. The family that raised the chickens is entitled to twenty percent of the harvested fowl. The remainder is sold through a community barbeque or through individual sale. The funds raised then cycle back into the program for a new batch of chicks with a new family.
In this small but productive program, a family is given responsibility for six laying chicks. The family feeds and provides an environment for the chick to grow for seven months. After the seventh month the hen starts laying eggs for a span of a year and a half. The family is entitled to keep the eggs which the hen lays during the week, and the eggs laid during the weekend are returned to the ministry to disperse to other children and families within the community.