Permaculture is a tool that is currently being implemented by various organisations as a platform for empowering previously disadvantaged communities. Permaculture could be revolutionary in a South African context especially in previously disadvantaged communities by:
- improving the health of communities through a healthier and affordable eating plan,
- Through creating awareness of self-sustainability as promoted through Permaculture
- and by educating communities in the philosophy and implementation of Permaculture
- and using Permaculture to create small-business opportunities and thus alleviating poverty
But there exist various factors that challenges the successful implementation of Permaculture for organisations that promotes its benefits. These will be addressed in this 10 Percent project!
Aims and focus of the project
Students will be confronted with the opportunities and challenges of the ‘Green Sector’, the role Permaculture plays in uplifting communities within a South African context. The students are tasked to:
• Understand and define issues from a design perspective
• Generate multiple potential solutions
• Build a prototype testing a design solution in a tangible manner
The aim of the project is therefore for students to gain an understanding of Permaculture entering the ‘Green Sector’ in South Africa and to write a brief that addresses the issues involved.
A design solution must be executed to illustrate how Permaculture can improve communities that considers the various constraints posed by the ‘green Sector’, Permaculture and impoverishment.
HOW WE HELPED
We live in a world of convenience where we talk about being green and being environmentally aware but do not engage in the participation of it. It sound like we are aware and environmentally responsible as we buy our kale smoothies and walk down the organic isles. The need is bigger and awareness is not enough without participation. The lack of participation stems from the negative attitude towards permaculture as it sounds like work and responsibility. The task at hand came to be about finding a way to package the message in an interesting way and increase the appeal of permaculture. Using design, we can address the problems by creating outputs that are of a different aesthetic to what is already there and have a more appealing message that encourages participation on top of the awareness. To this effect, we created a mobile application to present permaculture differently. The output takes the user through permaculture in a game which they will indulge in and learn without knowing that they are learning. They will also be guided through their own organic farming with the companion level of the game after which they can now participate in a stokvel further enhancing their permaculture lifestyle.
WHAT WE DID
Grow it is an edutainment application where a user learns about permaculture through playing a game as one would do in farmville but instead of ending there, they are also guided through creating their own organic garden in what we call the companion stage of the application. Because of space constraints that our users may run in, they can get into the stokvel part of the application. Stokvel is usually when people pool in their money and each member receives it on a rotational basis. In this stokvel, users do the same with their produce to ensure variety and it is in support of the communal welfare principle of sustainability