Posted in General Blogs

South Africa -Spring 2023

The beginning of 2023 has brought many adventures – Getting married being one of them! I am so happy to introduce Sam to the picture here at Mahala Love, not to mention to my life all around! He is funny, organized, and loves to do projects. He is a great asset to ML!

We had a combination Mahala Love working trip and honeymoon in South Africa in March. Sam got the crash course in people, food, places and our projects there. Except for the fact that he is very tall and South Africa shovels are perilously short, it was a great fit!

Together, Sam and I worked on the Seed library with Themba in Limpopo (see that page), met with Cinderella to design the new permaculture garden at the beautiful new school location, (See ML-South Africa, Mpumalanga) and did a little touristy sight seeing.

The trip was fantastic and never long enough. But September will be here soon enough and we can continue our work there. In the meantime, those locations are in very competent hands and the work continues there while we continue to work here.

Posted in Limpopo

South Africa – Thoughts about Small Scale Farmers

Small Scale farmers were faced with uncertainty when the President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa, announced the lock down, telling everyone to stay at home and restrict the movement of the people to only allow essential services.

The time that the president introduced the Lock Down, it was the exact time of completing the summer crops harvesting and moving to winter crops cultivation. Due to the government introduced Lock Down,  small scale farmers were unable to execute the duties at hand leading to the loss of sources of food and income and, also, interfering with the harvesting and cultivation calendar.

As time goes by, through the advocacy by sympathizers, small scale farmers were later allowed to go back to their fields provided they obtained permits. Even when they had permits, those who depend on retailers for seeds, as many do during winter season here in South Africa, were left wanting since other retailers that provide seeds were still considered non essential until level 4.

Now that small scale farmers have been allowed to work on their fields, there are also efforts by civil societies to provide some measure of relief by purchasing Agricultural produce from farmers which will be distributed to the vulnerable in the community.

Small Scale farmers are battling with a two edged sword, one being to continue with their activities and other being trying to protect themselves from the Covid-19 virus. South Africa is already in the middle of winter and normally people contact Fever and Flu like symptoms, and with the current pandemic, the situation is unpredictable.

South Africa is starting to see an increase in numbers in Covid-19 infections and everyone, especially elderly people, are advised to stay at home.  If the current rate of infections continue for weeks, it might create panic in people even though the lock down is being eased monthly.

This may hamper the effectiveness of Subsistence food production.