In the wake of the looming drought, a community based Social Accountability team in Tsholotsho North has made strides in engaging duty bearers in the area to help mobilize food aid. On 4 October 2019, the social accountability team conducted an awareness raising campaign at Sipepa Business centre. The awareness campaign took the form of a cleanup campaign where members of the social accountability team were conscientized community members on the importance of social accountability in the attainment of local community development.
After the cleanup campaign, the guest of honor, a local Councilor addressed community members and the issue of the impending drought was discussed. The objective of the meeting was to raise awareness on the need for social accountability and help entrench a culture of accountability. The meeting was also intended to contribute towards the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 which seeks to end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture. Article 1 of the Universal Declaration on the Eradication of Hunger and Malnutrition adopted by the United Nations on 16 November 1974 highlights that, “every man, woman and child has the inalienable right to be free from hunger and malnutrition in order to develop fully and maintain their physical and mental faculties.”
During the meeting, the ward Councilor reported that in his past engagements with the social accountability team, they discussed the looming drought which has the potential of leaving behind devastating effects. As part of the feedback, the Councillor reported that after engaging the Rural District Council (RDC) and the Ministry of Social Welfare, he was assured that food aid distribution was going to commence in October 2019.The councillor also reported that the food aid was targeting every household since everyone was facing hunger as a result of the poor harvest. The Councilor further reported that food aid registration will begin shortly and shall be done with due diligence.
The social accountability initiatives are meant to help inculcate a culture of transparency and accountability between duty bearers and rights holders. They also help build trust and confidence and help in the development of communities. Heal Zimbabwe through its trained Social accountability teams will continue conducting activities that promote social accountability in districts such as Gokwe, Makoni, Chipinge, Buhera, Zaka, Bikita, Tsholotsho and Gutu among other areas.
Source: Heal Zimbabwe Trust