Rural Community Devastated after Tornado
In KwaZulu Natal the Mpolweni Mission near Wartburg was hit by a devastating tornado and ongoing destructive weather. This is my birthplace. Steeped in my family history. It was a Church of Scotland mission station established as a teachers college. My grandmother, born in 1879, travelled from Kalabasi to participate in the teachers' study course and graduated in 1896. She met and married my grandfather there. He was a well respected carpenter in the area. My family have lived there for the past 126 years.
The Mpolweni community, an already desperately poverty-stricken area, has been totally devastated by this tornado - something not commonly experienced in South Africa. Several families have lost their homes, schools, community centres and livelihoods, without which they can only look forward to a very bleak future without help.
I will do anything in my power to help my family and friends to rebuild a community in dire need of any help that can be given.
To start with, we need to provide food and a roof over their heads with the basic necessities: blankets, clothes, medical needs, toiletries and more. We then need to avail assistance in rebuilding better and stronger homes that were lost in the tornado. In the longer-term we'd like to ensure additional employment opportunities and community empowerment initiatives in education, health and nutritional areas such as vegetable gardens and livestock management, etc.
The money we hope to raise will be going into a non-profit entity, Esimene Intuthuko NPC (being Zulu for Sustainable Development). I will be personally involved in hands on assistance to rebuild and empower the lives of the members o my community.
Professor Sazile Mtshali
Prof. Mtshali has dedicated her entire life to community upliftment and has become a global expert in social development. She has a Social Science qualification with additional qualifications in helping professions, namely General Nursing and Home Economics with majors in nutrition and food science. She is experienced in socio-economic research, sustainable livelihoods projects, household food and nutrition security, gender relations and impact, women and youth empowerment, water, sanitation and hygiene, land reform social facilitation, and capacity building of cooperatives, community-based organisations (CBOs), non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and faith-based organisations (FBOs), poverty alleviation through livelihood diversification, adult education, indigenous knowledge systems, communication and information technologies and policy development. Her career includes assignments within South Africa's agricultural and rural development sector and has participated in some projects in Southern and East Africa, Europe and more. Please do not hesitate to ask for a comprehensive CV if you are interested.