Kara-Kata Africa Village Project – Fraser Valley, BC, Canada
Returning to our roots: community empowerment through African cultural farming and self-sustainability
Making Africans the next generation of farmers in Canada! Along with an event, retreat and gathering place in nature, KAVP is a place of uplifting and farming reclamation. “Grow what we eat and eat what we grow” says our founder Toyin Kayo-Ajayi. A culturally appropriate farm/food system for the black community in Canada. This will also be an experimental space for African crops. Herbs, vegetables and natural medicines that are traditional in our culture. Let’s see what we can grow here in our backyard rather than importing everything. Train and become educated in traditional and western farming practices, creating economic opportunities to benefit the community and the farming community at large in Canada. Offering farm mentorships for black Canadians, how to start your own farm.
Along with our community partners across Canada, and in conjunction with the government of Canada Program, our vision of empowering our community through farming, self-sustainability and upholding our traditions is becoming a reality. Once the initial project is in place, we plan to expand by obtaining more farmland in BC and across Canada.
We invite you to join us on this journey through volunteer time and financial contributions.
Connect with us if you want to learn more and participate.
Growing season 2023 and more:
We have had a successful experimental season for Efo Tete (Amaranth), Water Leaf and Garden Egg. Unfortunately with the loss of our greenhouse in the bad Winter weather, we also lost some crops. However, we will rebuild thanks to the generosity of United Way!
Over the Summer so far, we have had meetings with the BC Minister of Agriculture and an Agrologist from the ministry came to visit the farm. At the end of the Summer, we will have a visit from the Foundation for Black Communities to discuss collaborating on our project.
The goat herd has been grazing the farm for the past few months, with our controlled grazing fencing system. With the abundance and diversity of natural plant life on the farm, there has been no need for hay this season.
Over the Winter and Spring, we researched and visited vertical farms and indoor growing facilities and we will soon be setting up an experimental indoor growing space on the farm.
The African Foods, Food Bank project is coming to life in conjunction with KAVP and generous local African Shop owners.
We are so pleased with the progress of the Kara-Kata Africa Village Project and the Canadian Black Farmers Association. We are grateful for the community recognition, the support and we see our project expanding in the near future.
Early Fall Preparations 2022:
We harvested our Efo (Amaranth) crop. It grew really well and we also have harvested lots of seed for the upcoming seasons for our farm and to share with the community.
We have prepared the space in the goat area and have started the build of our new goat shelter, which will be an addition to our current barn creating a separate space for our birthing and new moms and babies away from the rest of the herd.
Our planters have been prepped for incubating seeds, and a space has been allocated for our greenhouse build.
It has been wonderful to have many community members visit the farm this Summer to take a tour, learn about what we are doing, and sample some of our crop. Weekly, we have many people connecting with us who want to participate in the Canadian Black Farmers movement with us! This is amazing and we see how what we are doing is inspiring our community and how much of a need there is for culturally appropriate farming and food.
We had a very exciting meeting with the Mission Food Coalition, and we are happy to be invited to join in this important group focusing on food security, sustainability in food and farming and culturally informed and appropriate food and farming.
Goat Banking investment spots are available. Please ask us about this if you want to become a goat farmer with us. We do all the work and the community reaps the benefit.
Our team had meetings with MP Matthew Green, a member of the Black Caucus, and the BC Minister of Agriculture and team regarding moving our project forward. Both meetings were fruitful and offered resources for next steps.
Canadian Black Farmers Virtual Conversations, interviews with Nigerian radio stations. Our awareness campaign in ramping up. You can visit our Facebook page for recordings of these interviews.
Lots of physical work on fencing around the property to make more areas for the goat herd to graze.
We welcomed a new research/administrative assistant to our team, Sally Aganabah, brings experience and a fresh perspective to our team. Welcome Sally!
We created the Canadian Black Farmers Association as a partner to advocate for black farmers in Canada. Stay tuned for more to come!
March 2022 KAVP Update:
Two weeks ago, we added 2 Nigerian Dwarf goat babies to our herd from another herd near by in order to mix up the breeding. They have settled in well.
Two of our pregnant mamas gave birth the week of March 15th. Our biggest goat had 3 babies, and the other one had 1, bringing our herd to 22. We have 3 more pregnant mamas ready to give birth this Spring!
Over the coming months, we will be working hard to expand our barn to make more space for our growing herd. We will work towards building our greenhouses this Spring/Summer as well and much more!
The 2022 planting and growing season begins soon. Stay tuned for updates…
In the coming months, we will be meeting with our community partners across Canada including Elders, church leaders, business owners to create a plan for reaching out to those who this project is for, to discuss accessing more farm land in their respective areas and to brainstorm and project plan.
Over the Summer of 2021, our goat herd grew from 11 to 16 goats with 5 babies being born between mid August to Mid September (3 females and 2 males). Our breeder male (Olomi), is back on the job and we hope to be welcoming more additions to the herd in the Spring of 2022.
- We have begun our new barn project, we hope to have it completed by Fall 2022.
- Our 2021 growing season saw more Amaranth, water leaf and local crops. We are collecting
some of our own seeds as well.
- In the growing season of 2020, we had a good crop of Amaranth, water leaf, garden egg,
bitter leaf, traditional to Nigerian cuisine and natural medicines. Amaranth is also known to grow
very well in our climate.
Thank you to our supporters and partners. We appreciate you!