The number one topic in the past few weeks has been the drought. The extent of a very poor rain season is becoming more and more evident. The little harvest the people did have is now used up and hunger is spreading. There are several Help organizations that are handing out food, but we believe this to be the wrong kind of help as the farmers that do have a better harvest and want to sell their produce lose their customers. We would rather give someone seeking our help some work so that they can then buy their own food. Sure, one can argue that most of the poor can’t afford the currently high prices but destroying the existing Produce on the market by handing out food is definitely the wrong strategy. We would like to be able to give more people work but even our resources are almost depleted and the next three months will be the extremely difficult for most people here. If we employ someone for example as a construction helper, they can earn enough in ten days to buy enough mealy meal (maize flower) for three weeks. That is possible on a normal minimum wage here of about €1,40 per day. Momentarily we have several such work opportunities and would like to be able to give them to the most needing. Anyone who can help financially, so that we can help more people here, please donate with the reference “Drought” and your help will go toward this purpose. During this past August School holiday, we already gave as many pupils as possible holiday work so they can earn a bit of money to buy school books or a new uniform. I know that a picture says more than a thousand words, but I am not a journalist and I can’t bring myself to take pictures of clearly starving people to post them on our website. You just have to believe me when I say that in the next couple of months there will be many starving people here.
At the beginning of August, we had our 26th graduation. Our guest speaker, Mr. Tapela, encouraged our Students to start their own agricultural business and seek out suitable partners rather than seeking employment as there are too many graduates for the few available jobs. As he is a small-scale farmer himself, he invited the graduates to join his Whatsapp group where farmers exchange advice and can find business partners. You can find several photos from the graduation on our website, which is finally newer, better and more up to date. https://www.goodhopezambia.net Thank you to all the friends that helped redesigning the website.
Zambia has often had economical difficulties but at the moment it looks really bad. This is many due to the unbelievable mismanagement of the current government that rather pumps money into unnecessary prestige projects, such as a new airport at the copper mines, which nobody needs, even though just 40 km away there is a functioning airport with capacity to spare. Consequently, there is no money for medical aid in the hospitals, schools must wait several months for money to buy books and stationary etc. The Zambian currency is declining in value making imports very expensive and Zambia still imports many goods which could easily be produced here, such as many of the food produce.
But we daily have fresh produce to eat on our table, out of our garden and chicken or beef from our farm.
Yours Klaus and Christiane Müller