Slow Food in Somalia: An expanding network of gardens

Somalia is famous for all the wrong reasons: it’s been called the most failed state in the world, and over a million Somalis have left the country over three decades of civil war. And yet, despite these incredibly difficult conditions, the values of Slow Food are thriving, all thanks to the hard work of dedicated farmers, the national coordinator and the local coordinators.

“The network of gardens is growing all the time”, Mohamed told us on a trip to the Slow Food headquarters in Bra, Italy. “When Slow Food in Somalia started in December 2011, there was just one convivium and 7 community gardens. Now there are 107 gardens and 11 convivia.”

The gardens have been up to now concentrated in just a single region of Somalia: Lower Shabelle. This also happens to be one of the regions of the country worst affected by the ongoing insurgency by different militia groups. Indeed, many of the Slow Food gardens are in territory currently under their control

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