State of the South African Rural Farmers
Jun 2, 2015
Grace Sikhakhane is a happy wife and mother of six children. Like all the rural people Heifer works with, she wants her family to have a steady income and not to have to struggle to feed her children from day to day. But Grace's dreams goes beyond that. Her biggest dream is for all her children to get jobs and become successful. Grace wants to see her teenage daughter, Spahle, be able to continue her studies at university after Matric this year.
To secure a better future for her children, Grace became a member of Heifer International South Africa's Zusiphe Project, located in Nqundu Village, KwaZulu-Natal in 2012.
Heifer International South Africa (Heifer), a non-profit organisation, assists organised community groups from rural areas on their way out of poverty and food insecurity. The communities Heifer works with receive training, seeds, trees, livestock and on-going support. After a few years of cooperation, they become independent small scale farmer groups who generate their own income from various activities such as selling milk or eggs. In turn, the project members who receive support from Heifer commit to Passing on the Gift® by passing on the equivalent of what he/she received to another needy person. This ensures sustainability of Heifer's work and empowers project members to share in their success with others.
Grace is one of the 104 members of the Zusiphe Project, who started her participation with Heifer at the beginning of this year. "Heifer helped me in terms of knowledge and information on the planting of the crops, trees as well as book-keeping," said Grace. She has already established her own winter vegetable garden. In August, together with other project members, Grace will receive fruit trees and also goats within the following months.
Becoming a farmer means a lot of work, but Grace knows that the income from selling vegetables and goats will make a difference in her family life. She knows that becoming a farmer and owning her own farming business can create a better future for her children. She knows that with commitment and hard work she can make her dreams come true.