Finding Hope and a Future
In a country long ridden with war and conflict, people are looking for change and hope. Due to this, communities in Burundi have come together to promote peace, growth, and empowerment. Many of these communities have partnered with Plant With Purpose. Now one of our partnering communities, the Muvumu community has adopted savings groups and engages in trainings as well as community projects. Marcien is one member of the Muvumu savings group who has harnessed the support of his community to advance his family enterprise.
Like many in Burundi, Marcien lives off the land and tries to provide enough for his family. “Before joining the savings group, I was a lone operator with no access to finances. Everything I tried to do failed due to my lack of understanding of how to manage projects.” His land was unfruitful and Marcien, along with his resources went into surviving, not expanding.
New Farming Strategy, New Mind Set
“For the past 4 years I have been involved in sustainable development and savings groups with Floresta. My standard of living has vastly improved since the programs of this organization came and spoke. They spoke to my primary needs which were lack of available cash, soil degradation and an inadequate understanding of development issues.”
Marcien has started investing in projects that have long-term benefits and profitability. “Now I have started participating in agro-forestry and I have bought a cow for organic fertilizer.” He uses the fertilizer on his own farm and sells the rest for profit.
Marcien did not just change his farming strategy, he changed his whole mindset. “Before the Theology of Work (TOW) training, the only projects that interested me were ones that would bear fruit during my lifetime. I had no concern whatsoever for my children’s long term welfare.” But now, Marcien is taking on new projects that will benefit his children, community, and land.
Bearing Fruit on Trees and in Spirit
One of the long-term projects would produce fruit and beauty for the Muvumu community. Plum trees are native to the area and produce nutritious fruit.
Using his knowledge of native trees, Marcien has started a fruit tree plantation. “This enterprise will allow me to generate the income needed to support my family.”
Marcien demonstrates his faithfulness to God through his work.
He values the health of his family over his personal success and keeps God at the center of his work. “Now I have a clear vision of sustainable development. I care about the future of my children like every good Christian. Because this is God’s commandment.”