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Friday, May 24, 2024

Ethanol producer empowers community

Ethanol producer empowers community

Story by Tamuka Charakupa

THE Chisumbanje community is benefitting from various empowerment initiatives being spearheaded by ethanol giant, Green Fuel, including drip irrigation and community kitchens.

A group of 35 individuals are running viable community kitchens around Chisumbanje while some have engaged in garment manufacturing to complement their drip irrigation initiatives courtesy of the ethanol producer, which is operating in the area.

One of the beneficiaries of the programme said, “We are benefitting a lot from the various initiatives that are being spearheaded by the company. We are a group of 35 individuals who are running several community kitchens. We are earning a decent amount which we are channelling towards sending our children to school and the general upkeep of our families.”

“We were trained to use sewing machines and now we are getting contracts from the company to supply protective clothing for all workers. In the process we are also advancing our education and acquiring certificates,” said another community member.

“As a beneficiary of drip irrigation, I am growing cash crops all year round. I am a proud farmer and doing well,” another noted.

Manicaland Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Advocate Misheck Mugadza, who toured the Green Fuel ethanol plant this Tuesday, commended the company for empowering its host community.

“I am impressed by the level of production at the facility. It has employed over 3 000 local people and I have been informed that it is also generating around 13 megawatts of electricity with some being channelled into the national grid.

“Also of importance is their CSR policy which has seen the community getting at least 10 percent of its drip-irrigated land which is an empowering step given the dry state of the region. We have seen women working in sewing factories and some in the catering business and the call is to both the public and private sector to emulate such programmes so that communities benefit from corporates operating in their areas,” he said.

Meanwhile, Advocate Mugadza met Chipinge District government heads of departments where the need to effectively implement the country’s economic blueprint, the National Development Strategy One, took centre stage.

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