To restore the environment and replenish community health, dignity and pride through food security, rehabilitation of the environment and empowering historically disadvantaged communities, particularly women and youth to become self-sufficient in food production.
Permaculture is an ethical approach to designing land use and community systems, to provide food, ecological habitats, and other essentials needed for human survival.
The term ‘Permaculture’ comes from the words ‘PERMAnent and agriCULTURE; and implies the permanence of culture. The term was first devised in 1978 by Bill Mollison (An Australian ecologist) and co-originator David Holmgren.
The Permaculture ethics are at the centre of Permaculture philosophy and are broad guidelines of how we should behave towards the earth and towards each other.
Permaculture embraces three main ethical principles:
Care of the earth:
Using renewable resources, recycling, minimising waste, building up soils rather than depleting them, conserving water and so on.
Care of the people:
This means simply to look after oneself and others. Health and well-being are important as are learning, a sense of belonging, communication, trust and respect.
All people should have access to what they need to live a safe and healthy life.
Only take what one needs and sharing the rest. This Permaculture ethic focuses on co-operation, networking, contributing to the community and on distributing resources and wealth. (Labour, information or money).
Permaculture is a system of agriculture based on perennial and self perpetuating, multi use plants, and animal species useful to man. It encompasses the establishment of environments which are highly productive, stable and harmonious and which provide shelter, food, energy, etc, as well as supportive social and economic infrastructures.
Permaculture teaches us to observe nature, to understand our environment and so become more ecologically aware and responsible.
The philosophy behind Permaculture also looks at appropriate use of technology, e.g. energy efficient buildings, recycling, waste water systems, solar and wind energy, and creative solutions such as, compost showers and toilets.
The key elements of Permaculture are low energy inputs, and high diversity outputs.
African Raised Keyhole Garden - the ARK garden