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Use land to fight poverty

By unknown | Sep 02, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

THE recession is driving the majority of people in rural areas to the cities in search of greener pastures.

THE recession is driving the majority of people in rural areas to the cities in search of greener pastures.

But when they get there their dreams are shattered. Owing to their poor skills people cannot be absorbed into the formal labour market and sometimes end up doing casual labour, which is not sustainable. But even worse, they also resort to crime.

Big cities are no longer major employers because of the declining economic conditions. And continuous increases in oil prices lead to high prices of basic commodities, which make survival very difficult for the ordinary person.

Out of desperation some of these people resort to criminal activities to sustain themselves.

With the state of the world economy, continuous hikes in food prices, the ever-increasing prices of basic commodities and crude oil, which results in expensive fuel, one of the alternatives is to use the land to produce food and other commodities.

The amount of food produced need not be only for consumption. Instead, people should sell the food to make a profit.

Climate change also contributes to the rise in food prices. Extreme heat and floods make the growing of crops difficult, but this is a challenge that demands that people in general, and women in particular, have to be capacitated to be able to manage these challenges in a way that will benefit them without compromising the environment.

South Africans have to address the role that should be played by men and women in urban agriculture. This move would contribute to poverty alleviation, food production, environmental management through the use of organic waste and the re-use of water, skills acquisition in urban farming, job-creation initiatives, decision making and policy initiatives

Tshepo Diale, GaRankuwa


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