MOL Charitable Trust Hosts NGOs Meeting about Agriculture Projects

On Friday, March 18, 2022, five local non-governmental organizations (NGOs), grant recipients from the MOL Charitable Trust ("the Trust"), gathered for talks at the agricultural ecology center operated by NGO Eco-Sud in Ville-Noire, an area of Mahebourg located in southeast Mauritius. The meeting was aimed at building connections and sharing knowledge among the NGOs with the attendance of representatives or staff of the NGOs that are working on projects related to agriculture and sustainable development, as well as Mr. Goro Yamashita, Chairperson of the Trust’s Enforcers Committee and Managing Director of MOL (Mauritius) Ltd.

During the meeting, the NGOs exchanged details of their current projects, shared experiences and expertises, and committed to get together and share seeds and nursery plants with the aim of realizing sustainable, community-based agriculture. They also discussed various themes such as cultivation techniques, soils, composts, plants to cultivate, as well as appropriate seasons. Mr. Yamashita commented, "It was a highly informative meeting, and I learned a lot through discussions with the NGOs members. I have high hopes for them to succeed with every project, and as a result, build lively, healthy agricultural communities in the southeastern part of the island."

MOL will not only provide grants for projects through the Trust, but also emphasize relationships with organizations and local communities through grants, with an eye toward future actions to benefit local communities and all Mauritian societies.

Voices of the NGOs

1. Manoj Seeborun - President of F.A.L.C.O.N Association

"Increase the number of 'agricultural youth clubs' in villages of the region to encourage youth participate in the agricultural project—this is the concept behind this project. We support youth through education and training, with the support of the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sports and Recreation, and other partners.

About F.A.L.C.O.N Association:
This NGO provides training on sustainable agricultural production systems, targeting youth in the southeastern part of the island. It also opened a youth club in the area in cooperation with the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sports, and Recreation.

2. Sachooda Ragoonaden - Representative of Association Pour le Development Durable

"We promote a project related to kitchen gardening for growing vegetables. This meeting was very interesting, and I learned a lot. I think the connections I developed with other NGOs here will be very helpful for the project in the future."

About Association Pour le Development Durable:
This NGO supports local residents through awareness-building and skill mastery related to protection of coastal areas including mangrove planting, with the aim of improving living standards in the southeastern part of the island, particularly in impoverished areas.

3. Leeah Chakowa - FORENA

"Our project is preparing seed beds to raise not only vegetables, but also mangroves, for 15 women who suffered damage from the Wakashio grounding incident. At this meeting, we shared knowledge and advice, and made connections with other NGOs, which will benefit us in exchanging plants and seeds in the future."

This NGO provides training programs for conservation and planting of mangroves and endangered plant species, targeting women in the southeastern part of the island.

4. Sebastien Sauvage - Eco-Sud

"The "Resilient Organic Community (ROC)" project began in Ville-Noire in December 2020, during the first COVID-19 lockdown. The NGO conducts research at the agricultural ecology center, helps people in local communities learn methods to cultivate plants at home in an appropriate manner, and introduces cutting-edge techniques of sustainable agriculture such as raised beds and various composting techniques."

About Eco-Sud:
This NGO aims at balancing the economy, society, and environmental development by protecting the natural ecosystem and developing agricultural ecological systems to promote food self-sufficiency.

5. Arvin Beekharry - RESPECT

"It was very interesting to visit Eco-Sud. They have practically adopted old-fashioned vegetable culture close to that of Europe. We are moving ahead with the construction of greenhouses in Mare-Tabac, in the southeastern part of the island, as a training site for greenhouse cultivation with the support of the "Mauriwood Film Industry Artists Association."

This NGO supports production of organically grown greenhouse vegetables and restoration of traditional agricultural methods. It also supports development and operation of an online sales program for harvested vegetables.

NGO members visit the agricultural ecology center in Eco-Sud and share knowledge.