Challenges in Zimbabwe? That’s all in a day’s work

Two vehicles got stuck while visiting the project site at Gokwe district in Zimbabwe.
Two vehicles got stuck while visiting the project site at Gokwe district in Zimbabwe.

Working for a humanitarian and development assistance organization such as Welthungerhilfe comes with its own set of challenges.  Rainstorms to sweltering heat, bad roads to no roads, floods – no one is insulated from these challenges, be they teams on the ground or the directors.

During the recent visit of Mathias Mogge, Executive Director Programmes at Welthungerhilfe, to Zimbabwe, the team here came face to face with one such challenge.

Mathias visited various project sites in the Gokwe region of Zimbabwe. On the last visit of the day, towards late afternoon on 21st January, Mathias was scheduled to visit women small-holder farmers in Mutimutema village to see them managing contract farming of chillies under SIMBA (Sustainable Intensification of Market Based Agriculture) project. Driving on the dirt roads made it more difficult than usual because of heavy rains throughout the season, we reached the Sasame river. We needed to take our vehicles (3 in all) across to reach the chilli fields. Although the water was only knee-deep, and should have been relatively easy to cross, the riverbed was soft and sandy and full of corrugations.  What happened next can be seen in a short video clip and in the pictures below.


After two hours of non-stop efforts and help from local communities, we were finally ready for our way back to Gokwe town. This however couldn’t stop the team to finish what they came for.

Welthungerhilfe’s teams around the world come across such challenges every day. However the dedication of the staff, satisfaction of results and love shown by communities being served, make everything look so much easier and worth it.
Just as we were about to start back, a wry remark from a colleague summed it all up: “Well, just another day at Welthungerhilfe!”


You want to read more? Have a look at my post „Lessons in happiness“ on esmt blog!

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