Growing Energy & Nutrition for Environmental Stability & Investments in our Societies

Dr. A. Kweku Andoh: (July 1943 - October 2011)

The Global Model Forest for Self-Sufficiency
Central Region,
Ghana, West Africa
August, 2006 – January, 2010

In August 2006 Dr. A. Kweku Andoh, ethno-botanist, herbalist, naturalist and author along with his life long partner, Ms. Kali Sichen, nutritionist, naturalist, author, editor and ethnographer, and accompanied by three American supporters secured a twenty-two acre plot of land in a beautiful, rich valley in the Central Region of Ghana, West Africa.  Situated just four miles from the rich coastal fishing waters of the Atlantic Ocean, this lush, green, tropical paradise is the botanical home of pineapples, lemons, limes and oranges.  Surrounded by indigenous farming communities, this rich and fertile soil was a perfect place for the G.E.N.E.S.I.S. Pilot Program to demonstrate its viability.

Andoh and Sichen began immediately to implement the program.  As was the plan, the first order of business was to select the cash crop that would be the financial base for the economic sustenance of the project.  Moringa oleifera was selected as the major cash crop.  By October, 2006 the team was in place and the clearing of the land was begun.  The first seeds were planted on a rainy day in late October, just before Dr. Andoh returned to the USA.  Ms Sichen remained in Ghana as Managing Director, to oversee the entire project.

Mama Kali Sichen and Dr. Andoh with a team of local farmers and skilled workers
on the Moringa Farm in Ghana, West Africa.

Over the next three months the first acre of Moringa oleifera was planted.  Moringa is in great demand on the international market, and buyers were already in place.  A well was built by hand, by indigenous well diggers, who reached water after digging down only 14 feet.  December is the beginning of dry season; hence the watering brigade was set in place to keep the delicate seedlings alive.  During this time an indigenous shed was built using coconut tree fronds and acacia tree branches. Benches and beds were made from bamboo.  All this was done by the farmers with only one tool – a machete.  It gives a cool shelter from the broiling tropical sun typical of the dry season.

With the first rain in April, 2007 the young seedlings burst into growth like a human embryo, growing inches within a week!   The planting of the seeds progressed rapidly.  Within one month seven acres had been cleared and planted.  The lush vegetation kept the farmers weeding continuously as no chemical herbicide or insecticide was applied to this organic farm.  A natural pesticide plant was introduced as a ground cover between the trees to serve as a deterrent for unwanted pests.  This natural pesticide is also known as one of the most effective treatment for malaria.

As the 22 acre plot was clear many wonderful discoveries were made.  Growing on that plot were many orange trees, lemon trees, cashew trees, mango trees, and acacia trees. This find put the G.E.N.E.S.I.S. Project way ahead of the game in producing a model that provides food and nutrition as well as energy and building materials by the presence of the acacia trees.  Acacias are fast growing and are a source of charcoal made by the local farmers.  It is sold all over Ghana as the major cooking fuel for the people.  Meanwhile, we discovered also that indigenous to this land are several sought after tropical plants that are in demand by pharmaceutical companies in Europe.  These plants are a source of alkaloids that are used in producing nutraceuticals.  We taught the farmers how to leave those important medicinal plants growing as they were weeding, thus leaving in tack many important indigenous crops growing side-by-side with the Moringa cash crop.  This is the ideal for maintaining and preserving the local flora, while at the same time, providing cash income and keeping it organic.  This is truly the best of all worlds.

In 2008 we have planted major food crops to further this model toward self sufficiency.  Edible crops such as coconuts, pineapples, sugar cane, plantain and annual crops such tomatoes, green pepper, turnips, carrots, chard, cayenne peppers, onions and cabbage were planted and harvested.  The yet unexploited source for natural sweetening, the Miraculous Berry tree was also planted.  The herb that is now recognized as the most effective preventative and treatment for malaria, Artemisia annum has also been planted.

Important medicinal trees from many parts of the world along with unusual botanical specimens have made this Global Model Forest for Self Sufficiency a destination for naturalist, scientist and eco-tourists for years to come.  More importantly this Model also shows the indigenous farmers how they can improve their standard of living, their health and their well being.  Nearly all the food that they need plus important medicinal plants are there for their consumption. 

This is the first Model for Africans and Diaspora Afrikans to study and duplicate for their basic survival in their quest for Self Sufficiency, Sustainability and Survival through the wise use of Mother Nature’s abundance.  In this increasingly unstable economic, social, ecological and environmental decay this is one of the most viable and reasonable options.

In May 2009 the G.E.N.E.S.I.S. Project hosted students from the Morehouse Pan African Global Experience Program.  Dr. Andoh engaged the students in the practical science of plant identification, plant preservation of indigenous economic crops, horticulture and management and production of tropical crops. 

Morehouse College students set-up camp on moringa farm in Ghana, West Africa.

Detroit youth visit the North Scale Institute's botanical garden in Atlanta, Georgia and study herbs
and health & wellness.

Morehouse College, Spelman College, and Atlanta high school students learn the necessary
skills to cultivate medicinal plants.

Grandmothers in Ghana participate in a cerimony honoring their commitment to promote health
and wellness to future generations to come.

North Scale Education & Research Institute                     Dr. A. Kweku Andoh, Ethno-botanist
Kali Sichen, Managing Director                                           July 1943 - October 2011
5580 Feldwood Place                                                               Peace Be Upon Him.
College Park, GA 30349
404 767-4786