LOOKING AFTER OUR LAND

The theme this time is how we care for the natural environment. Much of the issue is concerned with helping people to make the best use of a small area of land.

The world that God created was something of great beauty and wonder, but many parts of the world are now barren, unproductive or of little beauty. Each of us can influence in a small way the area in which we live.

Please find below articles from Footsteps issue 41 in html.

To download a pdf version of Footsteps issue 41 click here (1247K).


  • Bible study: Placing God first

    Placing God first For our work in development to be successful, we need to place God first in every-thing we do. However, material things often take first place in our lives in such a way that sometimes these become our god. Instead, make the book of Proverbs the standard for your action. It suggests numerous principles which may help our work for God to prosper.

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  • Editorial

    One small planet The theme this time is how we care for the natural environment. Much of the issue is concerned with helping people to make the best use of a small area of land.

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  • Farming in arid conditions

    Imagine vast areas of land with no trees and plants – just dust and cracked earth. When land which used to produce crops loses most of its fertility and becomes barren, the land becomes desert. For over 900 million people around the world this is a huge problem. It causes food and water shortages and forces people to leave their home areas.

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  • Farming with little land

    Maybe you have no land or just a small garden. Try planting vegetables which grow on vines or up poles and need little space on the ground. You could grow them up the side of your house or along fences, in unused corners. You can plant one or two vines in every small, sunny space. Some examples of such plants are cucumbers, gourds, tomatoes, malabar spinach, passion fruit, choyote (or christophine) and all kinds of beans (eg: Lima bean, runner bean, winged bean, lablab bean). You could also ...

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  • Issues affecting our natural resources

    With thanks to Gillian Dorfman for this information compiled from Outreach packs 101, 102, 103. Produced by Outreach, 200 East Building 239 Greene St, New York University, NY 10003, USA and Outreach Regional Office, UNEP, PO Box 30552, Nairobi, Kenya.

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  • Letters

    The aged and AIDS in Africa As everyone knows, parts of Africa have the highest rate of HIV/AIDS infection in the world. Most of those affected are young people aged between 15 and 35 years. Less than 5% of people over 50 years of age are HIV-positive. So the increasing number of orphans is being taken care of by these ‘older people’. In Africa most older people no longer have a paid job and pensions are almost nonexistent. So our elderly people now need great help in order for them to cope ...

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  • Managing a borehole

    by Abdou Yaba Diop. Drought and lack of water have always been frequent in rural Africa. At the beginning of the 1980s governments and NGOs built various facilities – such as dams, wells and piped water systems – to try to overcome this problem. However, several years on, many of them are no longer working, often because of bad management.

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  • Mucua juice

    We prepare and sell a food product called ‘mucua juice’ which is made from the fruit of the baobab tree, commonly known as ‘imbondeiro’ here. (Its scientific name is Adansonia digitata). This fruit is rich in vitamins and minerals. To prepare the juice you will need two large metal containers, two buckets and a sieve.

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  • Our friends the worms

    Worms live in the top layer of the soil. They are small creatures, often unnoticed and yet they are very valuable to farmers. They eat plant and animal leftovers, turning them into useful nutrients for plants. With their burrows they allow more air into the soil and improve drainage. Soils with plenty of worms will be fertile

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  • Reforestation and resources - A view from Haiti

    A  view from Haiti Haiti is the western part of the Caribbean island shared with the Dominican Republic. Haiti means ‘mountainous’, but today Haiti’s steep slopes are scarred by massive erosion. Years ago Haiti was covered in mature forest with trees including valuable timber species such as West Indian mahogany (Swietenia mahagoni) and Haitian Oak (Catalpa longissima). Today’s Haitian population relies on wood for all sorts of uses but it is rarely produced in an organised fashion. ...

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  • Resources

    How to Grow a Balanced Diet: A handbook for community workers by A Burgess, G Maina, P and S Harris

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  • The Yatta Guides of Kenya

    by Dan Schellenberg with Simon Batchelor. The word guide is used for people sent out to find the way for the village; such as the way to information, a grazing area or water in times of drought. It refers to those who are gifted at seeing the way forward. These people have no official status, are humble and respected for their willingness to put effort into finding answers to problems.

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