We just received a note that Maa-Bara: Catalyzing Change – Winner of Mohammad Yunus Challenge to Alleviate Poverty through Improved Agricultural Processes is open for investment. The project is a closed-loop system that produces healthy fish and vegetables in areas with limited arable land. This ends up increasing food security as well as providing jobs in the Niger Delta and environs.
This will be a local project that will improve the lives of the people and it is the real deal. This is the pitch
In the agrarian society of the Niger Delta, spillage from oil extraction causes pollution of soil and water stifles both fishing and farming activities, crippling the local economy where there is 85% adult unemployment. Our solution is “Maa-Bara,” a scalable, locally sourced, locally crafted structure for the propagation of fish and vegetables atop this oil-polluted landscape. Translated “Water-Farm” in Ogoni language, Maa-Bara is a zero-waste sustainable agricultural model. Each Maa-Bara structure is designed to utilize kitchen scraps to feed tilapia fish. The tilapia produce waste, which becomes nutrient solution for hydroponics (growing vegetables without soil). In the summer of 2010, the team traveled to the Niger Delta and secured partnerships with Enterprise for Development International (formerly TechnoServe, Nigeria) and River State University of Science and Technology. In October of 2010, one of our team members constructed a 50-gallon proof-of-concept pilot. Shell Oil is on board to fund the roll out and scaling up of the project following a successful pilot in the Niger Delta.
Innovations: Vertical design uses gravity for aeration of water in lieu of aerator. Vertical design creates shade for workers, fish, and plants. Peer-to-peer agricultural training program in the fishing villages of the Niger Delta, partnering with University.
The problem: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/africa/niger-delta-bears-brunt-after-50-years-of-oil-spills-421634.html
If you want to be involved in this project, lead by our very own Nigerian MIT graduate, you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We will put you in touch with the team.The project was a product of Master in Architecture thesis at MIT and has the support of RSUST (University in Nigeria), Enterprise for Development International (largest NGO in Nigeria) and the Bodo community.