2019 Zambia Drought & Grain Shortage
Zambia runs on 2 seasons year round — rainy & dry.
Typically speaking, rainy season can last anywhere from November to May. This year the rains lasted a little over ONE month. It has not rained in Kunchubwi Village since December. As you can guess — the rains are critical for Zambians. The entire population’s sustenance is found in maize. Usually during this time of the year the maize is beautiful fields of green — the harvest on the horizon. Today Tony & Carol took photos of maize around Kunchubwi Village:
& a look at the rivers already running dry when they’re usually overflowing at this time:
We have our fair share of droughts in the US too — but often the biggest consequence is that we can’t water our lawn. The repercussions in Zambia are much greater — effecting 2 major lifelines — maize & water.
Borehole pumps are already being restricted to use during certain times of the day - to protect the water levels. Major grocery stores are running empty on Zambian staple mealie meal - limiting customers to 2 bags per check out. Not to mention the price of food is skyrocketing.
We could choose fear. It’d be really easy to choose fear, right now.
We’ve got a lot of people relying on us. Most importantly 9 children who depend on us to put food on their plates 3 times a day! The coming season seems daunting, overwhelming, and honestly — terrifying. Reality is that many people will not be able to afford to eat. Farmers will not make money in 2019. Our Chicks Empowered ladies have no idea how they will continue through this year without finding grain to make chicken feed. And every part of my being wants to give over to fear, to worry, to stress. But there are too many people depending on us to fall into fears’ trap.
Instead we’re choosing to view this as an opportunity. An opportunity to give love in Kunchubwi Village like never before. An opportunity to truly meet people where they’re at. An opportunity to be the LO providers that our kids desperately need.
We have a plan to stockpile a years’ supply of non-perishable goods for our LO kiddos. But we need your help — we need mealie meal by the truck loads and storage containers to keep the rats and bugs away. Because the price of mealie meal continues to rise — we honestly don’t know what the cost will be— but we think maybe around $1,000.
Thats priority #1 — feed our kids.
Priority #2 — give love to this community. We want to build a Food Pantry for Kunchubwi Village — where people from all over will be able to buy (at an extremely discounted price) food staples like mealie meal.
The craziest thing keeps popping in my head. We built a GIANT storage building in 2018. Sure we could have used some extra storage space but this building is like 4x the size we need. I think we just found the perfect use for it…