Why We Work So Hard
JustNeem works with villagers in Mauritania, West Africa, to help establish economic opportunities for those living so close to the Sahara Desert. The Neem tree, is used to generate income for families simply by planting the tree and selling its leaves and fruit.
In collaboration with local organizations, we help create jobs centered around the Neem tree. With proceeds from our soap sales, we fund the planting of Neem trees in neighborhoods surrounding Nouakchott, the capital of Mauritania. We’ve been traveling back and forth to Mauritania, bringing Neem harvested there for the last 5 years, paying a fair market price for labor and goods.
Update From Peter
“After arriving in Nouakchott, the capital, I took a 10 hour trip to Kaedi, a city in the southern part where the Neem nursery and orchard are located. I was very pleased to see so many people working the field. This trip was in the middle of summer and therefore among the most physically challenging ones I have taken so far. On the other hand it was a great reminder to see why we are doing all this in the first place.
I helped harvest 1000 Neem seeds from existing trees. Ken and his team have already planted them all to grow more trees for the orchard.
To see plants and trees growing in such a hostile environment as the Sahara Desert is rewarding. Between the Neem, Mango and Jathropha trees that have been planted in the orchard, the workers planted vegetables, melons, and sorghum. One lady from the village was able to harvest the vegetables and sell them at the local market this summer.
The well we dug last year has since been equipped with a solar water pump. That water makes all the difference. We did some maintenance on it, replacing one of the hoses that had weakened and started leaking with a flexible pipe.
It was incredibly heartwarming to see over 30 young men coming to the field during this time of the year to pull weeds, plant seedlings and water the plants. The resources and training opportunities that are coming in through JustNeem are turning parched land into a space full of life.”