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NGO urges women, youth to be self-sufficient

A local non-govenrmental organisation, Hand in Hand Zimbabwe (HHZ), has urged unemployed young people and women to never wait for food handouts or donations from anyone, but start income-generating projects for their upkeep.

BY MTHANDAZO NYONI

The NGO, which is helping resource-limited and marginalised people in rural communities to create better livelihoods for themselves and their families, said starting income-generating projects like poultry would help eliminate poverty.

“My advice to young people and women who are not doing anything for a living is, they shouldn’t wait for food handouts or donations from anyone,” HHZ CEO Felix Tete told Sunday Southern Eye.

“They should rather look at opportunities that are around them and start small businesses that will address the demands in the community and by so doing, I think they will earn a decent living.

“What basically lacks though is motivation.”

HHZ is supporting communities in seven districts of the country, namely Bulilima, Chikomba, Chirumanzu, Gwanda, Lupane, Nkayi and Shurugwi.

On Thursday last week, HHZ donated building materials and baking ingredients for a bakery among others, worth US$2 000 to a group called Zubhatule in Chimwara village, Lupane.

The group bakes bread, scones and plain buns.

HHZ also donated building materials for a fowl run as well as chicken feed worth US$1 000 to Vukuzenzele group in Lupane’s Sobendle village.

The two groups won a market linkages project enterprise competition organised by HHZ.

Instead of giving the farmers prize money, HHZ decided to buy them material.

Zubhatule came first while Vukuzenzele came third.

“I am excited and happy with the projects that we have rolled out in rural areas,” Tete said.

“These projects are addressing the needs of the communities that we are dealing with.

“If you look closely at the projects that we are implementing, these are mainly providing coping strategies to the communities to manage and mitigate the impacts of climate change.”

Zubhatile spokesperson Sheba Ndlovu (26) said they were supplying local communities, hotels, shops and schools with their products.

“Our vision is to bake quality bread and compete with big brands in the country,” Ndlovu said.

“We also need to buy our own truck for deliveries.

“This project is very helpful to us in terms of financial support and food security.”

Vukuzenzele secretary Simangele Ncube (29) said apart from rearing chickens, they were into goat production and baking.

She urged young girls to join clubs so that “they can be assisted in life”.

Tete said enterprises being implemented by villagers were sustainable because they were demand-driven.

“What also brings sustainability or growth in the enterprise is because we teach the farmers to fish, not give them fish,” he said.

“So, when you train them you actually empower them. No one can take the knowledge from them.

“They will use the knowledge to their advantage.”

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