Sustainable Farm

The “Shamba” (Farm in Swahili)

In 2008 Baobab was given an unsolicited donation from two donors in California that enabled us to purchase 12 acres of beautiful, arable land about 5 km outside of Bagamoyo town. Today it is the center of The Baobab Home. The kids are growing up safely, and close to nature where they can learn how we grow and use food for nutrition. The farm also allows us to be more self-sufficient, which provides a better life for the Baobab family.

Solar Energy

The Baobab Home is completely weaned off of traditional and environmentally draining electricity. Our solar installation provides all of the energy needs for farm and school. We also have solar-powered campus lighting donated by CSI ElectricalNot only does this save us an exponential amount of money, but it also safeguards the farm from the all too common Tanzanian power outages. A generous grant from Dar Rotary Club North has enabled us to be fully powered by solar electricity, even when it rains! And provides a great educational tool for teaching students about alternative energy solutions.

 

Biogas

In this uncertain and volatile time with regard to finite energy sources, we have successfully invested in the environmentally green “biogas." Put simply, biogas is a FREE cooking gas made from the methane of our herd of cows in a 50 cubic meter underground tank. It gets piped to our kitchen where it runs a stove and an oven. We use the gas for cooking most of the meals in our kitchen, and the waste runoff makes great fertilizer for our farm.

 

Black Soldier Fly Composting

In collaboration with EntoHack 7G, we established a black soldier fly colony on the farm. We feed chickens and fish with them, creating a closed-loop system. They also generate fertilizer runoff for the farm. These little bugs are miracle workers. They break down organic waste, and the larvae are superfood for our farm animals. We feed chickens and fish with them, creating a closed-loop system. They also generate fertilizer runoff for the farm.

 

Fish Ponds

Our fish ponds were funded by US Ambassador's Self Help Fund, thanks to the invaluable help of Micheal Paulhus (aka Babu Samaki). We have around 1500 tilapia. Rainwater runoff from the cowshed oxygenates our ponds and thanks to Stichting Bouwkamp in the Netherlands we have a new filtration system that tremendously help improve oxygen levels in the ponds

We are feeding them commercial fish feed, and also our own Black Soldier Fly (BSF) larvae which are an amazing source of protein. Our goal is to keep increasing the BSF to reduce our need for fish food, raise better fish, and protect our ocean from overfishing.

 

Water Well

We have recently finished installing a ring well fed by a natural spring. The water is used for drinking and bathing as well as irrigating our gardens. We also have rainwater collection to supplement the water supply.

 

Organic Gardens

On the shamba, we have an assortment of fruits, vegetables, and legumes that feed Baobab’s children and employees, as well as the students of the Steven Tito Academy. Here are some of the foods that we grow: oranges, limes, jackfruit, four kinds of bananas, papaya, lemongrass, ginger, aloe vera, spinach, beans, cowpeas, pigeon peas, limes, hibiscus/rosehips, okra, peppers, passion fruit, mangos, cassava… and more!

 

Cows & Poultry

We have now over 40 cows, several chickens, and two turkeys. Cows provide milk in the morning, and manure for biogas and farming. 

 

Our Sustainability Goals

We are always generating ideas for projects that remain consistent with our push toward self-sufficiency and environmental consciousness. Here are a few ideas in the works:

  • Soap making
  • Moringa and neem seed processing
  • Banana paper production
  • Growing oyster mushrooms
  • Drip irrigation to increase crop yield 
  • Hemp growing 
  • Fish farming
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