BISHOP STIMA DISTRIBUTES 110 BICYCLES UNDER SOCIAL AND GENDER ENHANCEMENT OF THE MCC(USA)-MCA-MALAWI CCJP MANGOCHI
The Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace in the Catholic Diocese of Mangochi is one of the social arms of the Catholic Church mandated to promote social justice which includes stewardship of God’s creation through sustainable management of the environment and natural resources. CCJP is one of the grantees of the MCC-MCA compact under the Environment and Natural Resources Grants Facility specifically the Social and Gender Enhancement Fund (SGEF) and is implementing a three year project from August, 2015 to July, 2018.
The catchment area for CCJP is T/A Chowe at the hotspot of Lingamasa river covering both upper Lingamasa and lower Lingamasa covering twelve hacters with total hectarage of 110,478.
A lot of strides have been made in terms educating the communities to manage their environment sustainably through forest regeneration programs and planting of more trees especially fruit trees hence CCJP seeks to scale up these activities after Compact close out. CCJP wishes to use the technical expertise gained both in effective project management and managing REFLECT Circles which enables collective solution development to pertinent community challenges as well as facilitating the training of women in leadership skills and economic empowerment activities through Village Loans and Savings as critical poverty reduction strategies at community level that should continue to be supported.
CCJP is promoting and has achieved best practices, such as enhancement of community and household re-afforestation, training in joint household planning and budgeting, resource mapping, empowerment of women in leadership to participate in decision making processes, lobbying men and local leaders to accommodate women in leadership roles, training women in business management and marketing, procurement & distribution of livestock to the marginalised, support VSL schemes for women, support to communities with reflect circles and funct
Major achievements of the project interventions include change of mind-set from depleting the environment to its management through established communal forest management plans and diversifying the means of source of income from charcoal burning to engaging in entrepreneurship and small scale businesses. Money realised from the various activities such as raising tree nurseries, bee-keeping, livestock production and VSL’s among others is used to meet household needs such as paying school fees for their wards from
The have also acquired positive behaviours, such as family joint decision making and budgeting which has greatly reduced cases of abuse of family resources by spouses mainly men, conflicts, marriage break ups hence promoted cordial relationships, accountability and transparency within family set up resulting in peaceful coexistence among women and men which has increased their productivity in development work as well as household income generation.
Currently there is an increased number of women actively participating in matters of public affairs and taking leadership positions in tribunals, village forestry committees, reflect circles among others than before the project was introduced in the area.
This good foundation is premised on the cordial partnership between MCA-M as a grantor on one hand, through provision of financial and technical support and CCJP as a grantee implementing on the ground on the other hand with the DC, Sultan Chowe active participation of members of the community who have understood the project concept and own it which has been strengthened by the close involvement of Government stakeholders.
According to Bruno Banda, CCJP Mangochi Diocesan Coordinator as one way of sustaining the project interventions, CCJP with the support of MCC-MCA has procured 110 pushbikes which have been benefitted by village forestry committees, reflect circle facilitators among others to ease mobility in the catchment area.