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Bucopho feeds over 200 elderly from own garden

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By JOSEPH ZULU - SWAZI TIMES-24-Aug-2009

SITEKI – Makhewu Bucopho Gcinuyise Mamba has donated vegetables for the elderly from his flourishing garden.

Mamba boasts of one of the most flourishing gardens in the area and also supplies some of his produce to local super- markets."The garden has cabbages, carrots, onions, spinach, tomatoes and beetroot, and I only use natural manure with no other chemicals," said Mamba.This is despite Makhewu being one of the regionís drought-hit areas and even dirty water is rare for most homesteads. Mamba said the garden uses an irrigation system which he fitted, as well as light bulbs which allow him to work late in the night.

He said he donated to the elderly because they were not able to work. He then encouraged young people to support him.

Mamba picked the cabbages with his wife, LaNkhosi and some of his children before handing them over to the elderly.

Mamba said he wanted to ensure that even if donors from other countries gave to the community, they should find that the residents were at least able to produce something and could give to the elderly. "This is an on- going exercise.

I first feed my family, donate to the elderly and then sell the remainder," said Mamba. Mamba said in future he would use the occasion to invite an HIV and AIDS specialist, who would educate the community on the pandemic. He further revealed that he produced about 1 200 cabbages every month from his garden. During the handing over of the vegetables, Mamba was initially disappointed that only a few people came from surrounding areas. A boundary dispute seems to have surfaced again as some of the elderly said they were not sure whether the donation was meant for them.

"It must be for the people at Maphungwane because they have also been invited," said a woman from Makhewu.

It was only later when Mamba sent some people to go to the homesteads calling on residents to attend the presentation that they left their homes and came in their numbers.


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