AFRA News, Land News, Uncategorized

Limpopo, a forgotten province

Limpopo, a forgotten province

By Tom Draper

Community members from Newcastle and Dannhauser exhibited shock as we walked through homesteads in Baltimore, in Limpopo. One of the witnesses vowed never again to complain about the living conditions that he faces in his own province of KwaZulu-Natal.

These were scenes as AFRA visited community members in rural Limpopo. In the middle of November 2015 the Nkuzi Development Association, AFRA and their farm dweller community partners, all of whom are part of the Tshintsha Amakhaya alliance, met for a cluster meeting to address similar challenges that they were facing.

Each community member raised issues ranging from electricity, to schools and roads. Glenn Farred, AFRA’s Programmes Manager, guided both the KZN and Limpopo community members to narrow the broad issues they raised down into the three most significant and pressing issues: land, water and housing.

These three ares of need proved to be heavily interlinked to community members, each person seemingly having major challenges around at least one, and it became more and more apparent that the Limpopo farm dwellers faced all three challenges simultaneously. Continue reading

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Farm Dwellers Advocacy Network Unites

When asked, during the second meeting of newly-formed Farm Dwellers Advocacy Network, to choose an animal to represent the struggle that farm dwellers face each day, a community leader replied, “uBhejane”: the rhino. The rhino was used to make the analogy that the people who used to have strength are threatened by poachers – the poachers represent those who infringe on their rights. Much like the rhino, farm dweller communities are often highly vulnerable, and feel that they lose their strength and unity when they are threatened.

Glenn Farred reflecting on issues that people have been facing recently. Photo: Tom Draper

Glenn Farred reflecting on issues that people have been facing recently. Photo: Tom Draper

The Farm Dwellers Advoacy Network gathered for the second time on the AFRA premises on Wednesday 11th November 2015 for a workshop, which included training on rights awareness. Leaders from various farming areas within the uMgungundlovu district assembled as AFRA aim to establish this network in order create a platform of communication where similar issues and means of resolving issues can be discussed. Continue reading

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