Nomutile Ntlokwana, a 46 year old mother of 5 who is unemployed. She lives in Bathurst with her disabled husband who is also unemployed but is dependent on government grants for survival. Nomutile is working voluntarily for the women group that got a small plot from the Masibambisane crop farming field ,the 10 member group is called a Stokvel in the local language ,this is a group of women who meet every week to discuss issues on how to develop themselves and one of the projects they are into farming, the group was identified by one of the ActionAid partners Masifunde as they have been working together for as a long time, the group is being supported by Action Aid for the market gardening project, through technical knowledge and some with inputs such as seedling.
This group saw the success of Masibambisane and approached them to ask for assistance as they want to alleviate poverty in their families. Their group is made of 10 single parents who came together and started looking into ways of helping their families without relying 100% on government grants. They got a plot from Masibambisane and started preparing the soil for organic crop farming; they got guidance from the members of Masibambisane who attended the Action Aid training that was taught them the organic ways of farming.
‘Our crops (cabbage, carrot, spinach, onion and beetroot) are saying more than what we can say, we are overwhelmed by the results we got from the soil itself. We never thought that we can be so productive, but the results are good and the land was so good to us too, it is very promising. We will be able to feed our children and sell, most of them all, we are thankful for the skill we got, each one of us will start a back yard garden now, because this has showed us that there’s more that we can do except for being single parents we can feed the nation too.’
Edmore Mangoti, Food Rights Coordinator expressed his delight in hearing that communities were translating the skills they learnt from ActionAid into sustainable livelihoods. “ActionAid prides itself in working with grassroots communities particularly on farming and it brings a smile to us when communities are using their knowledge and that of ActionAid.”, said Mangoti