The Tsorotso San Development Trust (TSDT), an organisation advocating for the development of San people in Tsholotsho and Bulilima Districts has introduced horticulture as part of the efforts to eradicate poverty and ensure food security within the community.
The community had a field day on Wednesday where the community was taught about horticulture.
Speaking to CITE, TSDT director, Davy Ndlovu, said following the ban on hunting wildlife life has been hard for the San community in terms of securing food.
“San people used to survive on hunting and gathering, they stayed in the bush but now there are laws banning hunting, so life is a bit difficult because they have no farming equipment hence there are challenges in terms of food supply. As Tsorotso we are trying to introduce them to farming both in the field and gardens for nutrition,” said Ndlovu.
He said they had an opportunity to discuss issues such as nutrition, climate change and adaptation and food security.
“We conducted a field day and took them from Gariya so that they can leave their environment and meet other farmers this side in ward 2 where we were discussing different issues such as nutrition, climate change and adaptation, and food security.”
Ndlovu said the horticulture project seeks to change the narrative that San people don’t want to farm.
“Two years ago, Plan International had these programs but it didn’t go well and as Tsorotso we realised that most of the times, you take a person to work without giving them adequate skills, capacity and information at the end of the day the project fails and they say community projects are failing. We want to change that, train the people so that every community is food secure,” he said.
He added that the project will use traditional methods of organic farming.
“As Tsorotso we also want to use basic knowledge and do organic farming. We also know that there were cultures observed before such as rain making and thanks giving, so as we have started growing our tomatoes and they are ready to be ripe, we want to do the thanks giving ceremony,” said Ndlovu.
Meanwhile, Chief Goledema said they need more projects to empower the San community.
“We need support to increase these projects, there are just few, we need plenty of them in the San community so that we can grow more vegetables as the San community as we were used to meat but hunting is now illegal,” said Chief Goledema.
He added that they want to have more gardens in the community which will also bring money to the community.