On 21 June 2017, Beautiful News revealed the short film on Eliot Chisango from the Donkeys 4 Development project in Limpopo, who is collaborating with locals and their mules to create jobs and clean up the environment.
Chisango didn’t come to South Africa to make a better life for himself. He came to enrich the lives of others. Having arrived in Limpopo after completing his studies in Zimbabwe, the environmentalist aimed to develop conservation projects that would build community. He picked up a job with the P.E.A.C.E. foundation, which specialises in community upliftment, and began to investigate the rural area where he was stationed to determine the best way of helping its people to help themselves.
He soon learnt that the community was already dependent on donkeys for transportation. Although donkeys are often mistreated in other parts of the world, Chisango was inspired by the hard-working mules, and decided to design a project around them rather than against them. The obvious environmental concern for the area was pollution and the donkeys provided the answer. Chisango set up a buy-back recycling centre and offered the community the opportunity to earn money by collecting waste from the area and delivering it to a landfill. This was the founding premise of his Donkeys 4 Development project, which provides people with carts to be pulled by their hard-working donkeys.
Chisango has enforced the message that all animals should be cared for properly and to highlight the on-going plight of the gentle donkey, the community has heeded the call with each owner undergoing training and allowing the animals to be monitored.
By teaching people to better use the resources at their disposal, Chisango has empowered people to manage waste and earn a living from recycling while curbing pollution.
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