HomeLocal NewsCaeda champions integration of San people

Caeda champions integration of San people

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The San community in Tsholotsho has been living under difficult conditions. They have been forgotten and ignored for a long time. Like other communities, they deserve recognition.

The San were a nomadic community. They were hunter-gatherers and wore animal skins. Sources of food made them nomadic.

They would settle in places where they could find wild animals.

Creative Arts and Education Development Association (Caeda) has said it is high time San people in Tsholotsho are integrated into society.

A representative of the San in Tsholotsho,
Christopher Dube, said at the moment there is a population of about 1 015 San in Tsholotsho.

“San people are found in Ward 1, where there are about four San families, Ward 7 has 80 families, Ward 8 has 20 families and Ward 10 has 38,” said Dube.

Realising the plight of the San in Tsholotsho, Caeda has taken it upon itself to assist them. The organisation sources donations in the form of food, clothing, blankets, farming implements and the building material.

Caeda founder Davy Ndlovu said he formed the organisation in 2005 with the core objective of integrating people from minority groups into society.

The organisation is registered with the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe.

“We launched the organisation in 2009 in Tsholotsho and as of now, it is working very hard to integrate the San into society,” said Ndlovu.

Ndlovu said differences in the cultures in Tsholotsho created a barrier between ethnic groups. Caeda conducts workshops to promote inter-cultural tolerance.

“We are working towards bringing the San to the fore as they are currently not recognised in the society. It is known that these people’s lives were based on hunting animals and gathering food from the wild.

“They were not farmers. With the advent of the current laws that prevent people from hunting, their lives have become tough,” said Ndlovu.

Ndlovu said the San needed training in farming.

“We want people to know that there is such a community which needs their assistance. The San also have a challenge in acquiring birth certificates. Most of them do not have the documents and this is currently hampering their efforts to send their children to school,” said Ndlovu.

Ndlovu said on March 18 this year, Caeda sponsored a charity walk with the aim of fundraising for the San.

The money raised through the walk was meant to enable the San to construct their cultural heritage home as a way of conserving their history.

Vice-President John Nkomo recently donated building material worth $2 500 for the construction of the main heritage centre and also provided transport to deliver the material to the centre.

“On June 24 we will be having a ground-breaking ceremony to for the construction of the heritage centre,” he said.

The San representative, Dube, appealed for food and donations from well-wishers. He said there was need for integration of the San in the education sector as well, adding their children were not going to school due to financial crisis as most of their parents were not working.

“We are not employed because we are not educated. We therefore cannot send our children to school because we do not have the money to do so even if we want. When we send our children to school, they are always sent back home over nonpayment of fees and they eventually drop out. This means our community will remain poor and uneducated,” said Dube.

Dube said even the government’s basic assistance education module had not adopted even a single child from the San and wondered why the government would isolate the community.

“We are ignored because there is no one educated among us,” said Dube.

He said after noticing that at some point the government would channel some donations to the community and influential people could divert the donation, the San people decided to form a committee to oversee any issues concerning donations coming to them.

“This committee will deal with those who want to donate to us face-to-face in order to avoid the situation where things meant for us benefit the wrong people” Dube added.

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