img 1161David Peppiat and Diane Moody from British Red Cross gets a briefing from ZRCS Secretary General Mrs Emma Kundishora and other officers during a field visit in Shurigwi

Zimbabwe Red Cross Society Hailed

 By Takemore Mazuruse

A visiting British Red Cross Delegation has hailed Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS) for its humanitarian work in Zimbabwe. Speaking after a tour of British Red Cross funded Food Security and Livelihoods project areas in Mashonaland West and Midlands Province, David Peppiatt the International Director for British Red Cross said the Zimbabwe Red Cross was doing a lot to alleviate human suffering and capacitate the disadvantaged communities. Project areas that were toured include Hurungwe in Mashonaland West and Shurugwi in Midlands’s provinces.

 

“This visit has really given us an appreciation of the fantastic work the Zimbabwe Red Cross is doing as well as getting an insight into the challenges you are facing in implementing the project. I would also want to salute the programme beneficiaries for the great work they have done and I believe even greater work is going to be done,” Peppiatt said. Peppiatt could not hide his joy after touring thriving Community gardens in generally dry areas courtesy of the Zimbabwe Red Cross supported sand water abstraction initiative. Other beneficiaries were also flaunting their goats bought with funding support from BRC and implemented through livestock voucher restocking programme by Zimbabwe Red Cross Society

 In Peppiatt’s team was Diane Moody, the Africa Team Manager for British Red Cross. The British Red Cross is currently funding the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society’s Food Security programme 2010-2012 to the tune of BP600 000. The ZRCS Food Security and Livelihoods programme generally looks into the emergency food needs and recovery and development of the vulnerable groups through some livelihoods projects that capacitate communities to come up with community based solutions to their everyday challenges and to be resilient to future shocks.

Zimbabwe Red Cross Society Secretary General Emma Kundishora also saluted British Red Cross for their support. “Zimbabwe Red Cross needs partners in the mould of British Red Cross and we really appreciate their support in our humanitarian work. With such partnerships, we can be able to put a smile on the faces of the vulnerable groups,” she said.

 The project has assisted communities with agricultural seeds, farming implements and small scale irrigation mechanisms through Sand Water abstraction mechanisms to run community gardens in areas with dry river beds. Selected beneficiaries also got funds to buy goats so that in future families can have sources of income for their daily needs. A total of 9000 households have benefited from this programme and of these 7020 are from Mashonaland West and 1980 are from Midlands Province.

Headman Richard Chemhuru from Mazivisa village in Shurugwi could not hide his elation at the positives the community gardens and small live stocks have brought to his people. “We really appreciate the Red Cross for its work. Over the years, we have benefited from their benevolence and we hope they continue complementing government efforts in alleviating suffering.”