This project is being implemented by our partner African Sand Dam Foundation, and includes the construction of a sand dam as well as agricultural activities including terracing, tree planting and the creation of a tree nursery and seed bank.
Below is unedited project information direct from our partner:
The group was formed in 2006 and formally registered in the year 2008. At the time of formation it had 36 members comprised of 7 men and 29 women. Kyeni kya thwake was formed due to the reasons listed below:
- Lack of access to water
- Payment of school fees and hospital bills
- Poor housing
- A desire to take part in community lending activities
Their economic activities include:
- Goat keeping
The group is engaging in the following activities namely:
- Digging terraces
- Tree planting
- Goat buying
- Tree Nurseries establishment
The main sources of water are river Thwake and river Ngwane. The distance is 5km respectively for both rivers. On average during the dry period, one spends 6-7 hours to fetch water. During the dry season deep wells are dug across the river channels which pose a threat to the community members.
The members are not able to irrigate food crops and vegetables due to lack of water which if available would improve their food and incomes security.
There are isolated cases of school children who get raped when they go to fetch water in the evenings. Water from these rivers is relatively salty and often leads to water borne diseases hence not safe for drinking.
Food security in the area is relatively low. The main crops grown in the area include:
- Green grams
- Pigeon peas
Crop production is low due to poor rainfall and lack of seeds. The group have the knowledge and practises concerning the following.
- Use of manure
- Digging terraces
The often practised method of agriculture is mixed farming and intercropping.
They have knowledge on and practise tree planting. They have planted the following species in their farms;
They have firewood shortage, some buy and others collect firewood from nearby bushes.
In the recent past they have been experiencing changes in weather which has resulted to low farm yields. One of the coping strategies, the community is growing drought resistance crops.
There is minimal harvest due to drought. Famine has resulted to malnutrition to children and poor school attendance.
Their sources of income are:
- Casual labour
- Selling of vegetables
Low income has resulted in drug use and early pregnancies as people are not able to access higher education due to lack of fees.
- To construct water tanks and sand dams
- To pump water to a tank near their homesteads.
- To plant trees
- To dig terraces
- To buy goats for members.