Umuzomuhle Old Aged Club Garden Water Project – South Africa

Betty’sGoed, Albert Luthuli Municipality, Gert Sibande District, Mpumalanga Province, South Africa

 Community Description
Betty’sGoed is a rural village in South Africa about 15 km away from the Oshoek border gate with Swaziland. During the Apartheid era, the area around Betty’s Goed was used as a homeland for the Swazi people. Many were moved from around South Africa and have lived there ever since.

The village is located off a dirt road, and because of its lack of infrastructure it is hard for many people in the village to find employment. Often young people leave the village for larger cities to find jobs or get an education. They do not return to the village, leaving older members of the family to look after the home and small children.

The Umuzomuhle Old Aged Club currently has 15 registered women members, the oldest being 92 years of age. Many of the elderly women are the heads of their household. They are responsible for taking care of their adult children, their grandchildren and general upkeep of the home. These women supplement their family income with their work at Umuzomuhle. There, they make Swati straw mats, mats from plastic bags and other handicrafts which they sell at local markets. The women also keep a garden around their center, where they grow vegetables and mealies. They harvest these vegetables and eat them at the center where they work. The excess produce they bring home to their families or sell.

But Umuzomuhle is more than just an income generator. The club provides a place where the women can go and report abuse and find help from a social worker. They also empower themselves by having basic education classes at the center from June through December. They learn basic maths and literacy to help them manage the group’s finances.

However, the water in Betty’s Goed is unreliable. The water treatment facility is old and gets overloaded. The taps can be dry for up to a week. The village bore-hole and river are too far away for these older ladies to go and carry water back. So, when the taps are dry the women cannot irrigate their crops and work stops at the center. This threatens the food security of their families and the financial stability of the group.

Project Description
This project is to install a 2,200 L Jojo (water collection tank) in the garden of the Umuzomuhle Old Aged Club’s facility. The water collected will be used to irrigate the community garden.

Project funds will be used to purchase a Jojo and pipes to connect the water tap to the Jojo, as well as for transport of the equipment and materials.

Umuzomuhle will provide the labor to install the tap and set up the Jojo on the existing stand.

Project Impact
75 people, consisting of the 15 registered women in the club and their families, will benefit from the project.

Peace Corps Volunteer Directing Project
Briana O’Sullivan

This project will provide for much-needed irrigation of the community garden. It will allow the highly-effective gardening program to continue, and be of great benefit to the participants and their dependents.

Dollar Amount of Project

Donations Collected to Date

Dollar Amount Needed
$0.00 – This project has now been fully funded through the generosity of Jean O’Sullivan,of Coral Springs FL, USA.

We encourage others to continue to donate using the Donate button below, and we will notify Peace Corps Volunteer Briana O’Sullivan of your donation. Additional funds will be used to fund the next project by Briana and/or those of other PCVs in the country.

This project has been finished. To read about the conclusion of the project, CLICK HERE.