The Nestle Community Nutrition Awards were launched in 1993 to respond directly to hunger and food shortages in South Africa, and to ensure that there is ultimately food security, especially in rural areas. This Initiative aims to promote a culture of gardening and organic food production as a means to reduce hunger and malnutrition.
The Nestle Community Nutrition Awards are targeted at women projects operating in rural and per-urban communities, however in 2009, the programme was expanded to include a category that recognises schools and their efforts in curbing poverty and hunger.
Vegetables and fruits harvested from the gardens are used to create a balanced and nutritious diet for orphaned and vulnerable children in schools and the rest of the produce is sold to the community to raise funds.
The Nestle Community Nutrition Awards competition is open to communities and schools in all nine provinces in South Africa. The competition is premised on a partnership model with provincial Departments of Agriculture who have dedicated extension officers who oversee and monitor the projects.
Objectives of this programme:
• To address issues of food security and malnutrition.
• To encourage self-reliance through food gardens.
• To position food gardening as a means to earn income and emphasise the importance of proper nutrition and healthy eating habits while improving the nutritional status of our communities.