Gwanda eldery seek assistance

A GROUP of elderly people, residing at the Gwanda Home of the Aged, have appealed to the government and well-wishers for a pipeline that will draw recycled water for use in a drip irrigation project they have embarked on as a climate change adaptation measure.

Report by Albert Ncube

The appeal was made by the chairman of the home Rido Mpofu during a 2013 climate change media tour organised by the Environmental Management Agency in conjunction with the United Nations Development Programme).

Mpofu said the inclusive government, through the Social Welfare ministry had promised to assist them in the drilling of a borehole, but he said he was not sure whether the deal would materialise, since a new government was about to take over.

“The challenge we are facing is that we are using treated water from the municipality, which is expensive,” he said.”

“It would be better if we get recycled water, but we will need a pipeline to pump the water here.”

Mpofu said eight old people, among them a 91-year-old, were benefiting from the drip irrigation project by cultivating vegetables on a half hectare piece of land for their own consumption.

The former Gwanda mayor said climate change had impacted negatively on the livelihoods of many communities, hence the need to adapt counter measures, such as drip irrigation.

“We have seen erratic rains over the years and high temperatures, especially in Gwanda and Beitbridge and the weather conditions have affected the livelihoods of many people,” he said.

The entourage also visited Mlingo agro-forestry project in Nswazi area, Umzingwane district, where villagers have planted indigenous and fruit trees in consolidated gardens.

In Matshetshe, a villager Litha Mabena, exhibited wood-saving stoves that reduce emission of harmful gases and minimise deforestation.

The tour sought to raise awareness in the media fraternity and also bring to light the visible changes of climate change and its impact on different climatic seasons, including changes in rainfall patterns, floods and droughts and adaptation interventions.

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