Viable horticulture, mushroom projects for Manicaland

10 May, 2024 - 00:05 0 Views
Viable horticulture, mushroom projects for Manicaland Local Government and Public Works Minister, Honourable Daniel Garwe (in-front), Minister of State for Manicaland Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Advocate Misheck Mugadza, and other delegates tour the massive greenhouse at Masvosva in Makoni West Constituency on Wednesday. — Picture: Tinai Nyadzayo

The ManicaPost

 

Lovemore Kadzura
Post Correspondent

GOVERNMENT in partnership with the Swedish Embassy, rolled out lucrative and inclusive commercial horticulture and mushroom economic projects in two districts, resulting in the creation of thousands of job, while fusing women and youths into well-meaning economic activities.

The programme, funded to the tune of US$4. 6 million, is being administered by Gender Links Zimbabwe, and has two lucrative projects in Manicaland —which include a massive greenhouse at Masvosva, in Makoni West Constituency and a viable mushroom venture in Chikanga suburb of Mutare.

In other parts of the country, funds were availed for waste management, clean energy and market facilities projects, which have overwhelmingly transformed beneficiaries’ livelihoods.

Speaking at the commissioning the two Manicaland projects on Wednesday, Local Government and Public Works Minister, Honourable Daniel Garwe said the programme is in tandem with the country’s vision of creating an upper middle economy where all citizens lead decent lives.

Minister Garwe said by promoting gender-inclusive local economic development, the initiative is creating a just and equitable society where everyone has an opportunity to succeed.

“This transformative initiative marks a pivotal step towards reducing poverty and enhancing livelihoods through gender-responsive and inclusive local economic development in 12 centres of excellence for gender centres in local government. The vision for this programme is to create a society where women, youths and men have equal opportunities to contribute to and benefit from economic growth.

“On November 1, 2023, President Mnangagwa launched the Local Authorities Blueprint on service delivery towards attainment of Vision 2030.

“The blueprint is underpinned by the mantra: “Call to action — no compromise to service delivery”. It is therefore critical to underscore that local authorities as a third tier of Government are a critical stakeholder in achievement of an upper middle-income society by 2030. I am therefore highly elated that Makoni Rural District Council and Mutare City Council contributed towards the success of the Masvosva Greenhouse and Chikanga Mushroom projects respectively which resonates well with the “Call to action — no compromise to service delivery”.

“We envision an upper middle income economy by 2030 with local authorities that are empowered to drive economic development that is inclusive, sustainable, and gender-responsive.

“Through this programme, viable local economic development flagship enterprises have been established in 12 centres across the country.

“These enterprises will serve as models of best practice, showcasing how gender responsive local economic development can drive economic growth and create meaningful opportunities for all.

“In each of these 12 local authorities, we have invested in critical infrastructure projects that will support the development of the flagship enterprises. The total value of the project is US$4.6m over three years. The projects include the construction of horticulture infrastructure like greenhouses and mushroom houses.

“Waste management facilities were also constructed and relevant equipment as well as clean energy facilities and markets were availed.

“The programme will create jobs for 3 600 people in 12 local authorities and provide the much-needed income and improve the livelihoods of families and communities,” said Minister Garwe.

Minister of State for Manicaland Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Advocate Misheck Mugadza welcomed the projects, saying they have made significant impact to the Masvosva and Chikanga communities, addressing multi-faceted challenges.

“The overall goal of the programme is to reduce poverty and enhance livelihoods through gender responsive and inclusivity. These initiatives, therefore represent the significant milestone in our commitment to fostering inclusive growth and empowering all members of our society.

“The Masvosva Greenhouse and the Chikanga Mushroom House are multi-faceted projects which will assist the province to shoot several birds with one stone. We shall achieve Sustainable Development Goal Number 2 — zero to hunger and Number 5 — gender equality through the implementation of programmes such as these.

“The growing and selling of horticultural produce and mushroom serve as a platform for promoting gender equality and empowerment and growing our economy as Manicaland,” he said.

Gender Links regional director, Mrs Priscilla Maposa said her organisation poured in a significant amount of money for the projects and the involvement of Government, through local authorities, will make the projects self-sustaining.

“For the Masvosva Horticulture Project, we availed US$178 000 — for the construction of the infrastructure, while the Chikanga Mushroom Project was supported with US$76 000. For sustainability, the programme is being implemented in partnership with Government and local authorities.

“Councils will take over and run the projects together with communities, capacity building of council officials and beneficiaries is also key for the ownership of the programme. The beneficiaries have developed business plans and models which also outlines how the businesses will be run, flourish and remain in existence even when the funder has weaned off beneficiaries,” she said.

Mrs Josephine Makumbe, the secretary of the Masvosva Horticulture Project, said the greenhouse facility has changed the face of the village and transformed their lives for the better.

“We are a group of 50 women, youths and men commercially growing horticultural produce in the greenhouse. We have graduated from subsistence to commercial farming — a dream come true for us. The earnings are so encouraging, and we hope to penetrate bigger markets in Harare and Mutare,” said Mrs Makumbe.

 

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