The Mvula Trust spearheaded a sanitation delivery programme in the uMgungundlovu District Municipality aimed at eradicating sanitation backlog in many villages located in that area.
The project created many job opportunities and empowerment programmes, which are as a result of the Community Based Organisational Approach Model the Trust has developed and successfully implemented for the past 20 years.
As part of its commitment to ensure that community members benefited in the sanitation projects, The Mvula Trust opted for block toilets with a view to create job opportunities that will last for a longer period. These types of toilets take time to build as compared to the prefabricated ones, resulting in sustainable jobs for local communities.
As a result, residents in the local communities got opportunities to be, among others, builders, quality assessors, bookkeepers and suppliers of different resources to the project.
With high levels of unemployment and backlog in skills training programmes, particularly in the rural communities, sanitation delivery projects like these ones should be used as a trajectory for local economic empowerment.
The impact of these programmes did not go unnoticed by the beneficiaries.
“Our community is very happy with this project because there were people who were not employed so now they are working. There are some suppliers who are doing well in their business with the help of this project,” said Bongekile Mkhize from Ngilanyoni area.
Youth that have passed Grade 12 were, among other activities, employed as data collectors and distributors of questionnaires for a health and hygiene survey conducted in the area.
“There is no precedent of what The Mvula Trust has done in our community. All we have to do is to thank them for giving us practical experience in the real work environment,” said Nkosinathi Mwele, one of the young beneficiaries from Inzinga community.
It is evident that involving communities in the projects taking place in their area is crucial. This approach maximises the benefits of projects and massively contributes toward community development.