Tag Archive for: storyteller

Florence Chabanel, co-owner of Le Fournil de Plett, Plettenberg Bay. @ David Peter Harris.

Florence Chabanel, co-owner of Le Fournil de Plett, Plettenberg Bay. @ David Peter Harris.


On my first visit to Plettenberg Bay in the Western Cape, I was pleased to find many stations where people could drop their recycling in the colourful bins. That was just one of the many signs that Plett is not only the ultimate holiday escape, but is a town built on firm eco ethics and awareness. Florence Chabanel, the French half of Le Fournil de Plett, is one of the drivers of this inspiring eco shift.

“Our passion is making our customers happy, in the same way you would treat your friends at home. We believe that you are what you eat, so nothing tops natural food that is chemical and preservative-free . At Le Fournil we are proud to make all our dishes from scratch, from home-made artisan breads to real stock for our hearty soups.  Sourcing and offering free-range and organic products as much as we can is our ethic and neither Jane (co-owner) or myself are ready to compromise.”

“What difference do we make in the world? We actively  participate in educating people’s taste as well as making our staff proud of their skills and their creations. So maybe we are not making a difference to the big world but we certainly do make a difference in our small,  little world. “


Le Fournil de Plett prides itself in a business ethos and inspiring eco choices, which pave the way for bigger changes.

Pop in for an almond croissant and a cup of coffee, or visit their Eco Atlas page.


Alshaun Bosch in his garden, Steenberg, Cape Town. He signed up for the training program offered by Soil for Life (SFL) and won Gardener of the Year @ David peter Harris.

Alshaun Bosch in his garden, in Steenberg, Cape Town. He signed up for the Home Food Garden Program offered by Soil for Life (SFL) and won Gardener of the Year in 2014 @ David Peter Harris.


We met Alshaun at his place in Steenberg, a community in the Southern Suburbs where very often gang crime flares up, putting its residents at high risk. He welcomed us with a bright smile, thrilled to take Louise from Soil for Life around, showing her (and us) the new developments and additions to his home vegetable garden. He tells us, “I wasn’t really interested in gardening before, I started by chance. Then, the first seeds started growing and I noticed little things coming alive. Now when I eat, I think that my food comes from something that was once little; I am in love with vegetables and I always tell my kids to eat them.”

“Gardening helps me with being patient, I never stop trying to get the results I want. My garden is my joy and my safe place. I sometimes hear gun shots but I know I am safe here. It has become a meditative, spiritual and liberating experience”.

Alshaun took part in the Home Food Garden Program run by the Cape Town-based NGO Soil For Life (SFL). The organisation educates and trains people in organic food gardening, running hands-on practical training courses in impoverished communities so that families can grow their own healthy food all year around. SFL provides ongoing support and advice to the home food gardeners. Alshaun won the Home Gardener of the Year in 2014; he now makes his own compost, some of which is sold at SFL’s Resource Centre in Constantia, grows organic vegetables and he is planning to open a nursery too. He makes beautiful up-cycled pots and planter boxes, that can be purchased directly from him (email us if you would like to make contact).


Alshaun in his garden in Steenberg @David Peter Harris.

Alshaun in his home vegetable garden in Steenberg, Cape Town @David Peter Harris


SFL is running the fourth edition of the annual Eat for the Earth Campaign. During the month of June, anyone can register for a meal, receive tips for growing and preparing wholesome food, and host a  meal where you and your friends can share delicious food, and donate resources to SFL. and trains people in


Host a fundraising meal, or get in touch with Soil For Life via their website.