Determination at Zibiliseni garden

“Our name Zibiliseni means 'determination' and we are indeed determined!" asserts Sphiwe Ncube, who makes a living by growing and selling vegetables as part of the 42 member Zibilseni garden scheme.  She farms in Gwanda, an area with low, erratic rainfall.

Life is a constant struggle for these smallholders farmers to keep their crops healthy. They have to carry all the water for their garden from the dam in buckets.  It's very hard work and occupies up many hours of their working day.

Sphiwe explains that the lack of rain means watering is a constant chore.

"It is tiresome for us women. You will not have time to do other household chores because you will be so tired. We cannot grow crops to eat or to sell because the rains are not reliable."

But Sphiwe faces the future with greater optimism as her garden scheme will soon aquire a solar powered irrigation system.  This will not only make their lives easier, but will enable them to cultivate more crops to sell and so increase their income.

"I am so happy with the coming of this solar technology!" she exclaimed.

The Zibiliseni garden has been persevering despite the challenge of water. The farmers are looking forward to using solar to power their irrigation.They believe the project will help transform their lives and will help them deal with some of the issues of the changing climate. 

RIght now the community is working on sorting out community ownership and governance as well as undertaking management training for the scheme so that systems are in place before installation.


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