Natural Resources – Meet the people
Regulo (Chief) Mpunga is candid about his community’s early relationship with MICAIA. When they (MICAIA) first came to Moribane, we thought they were just another NGO. We have had many promises, and some projects over the years, but mostly the NGOs come and go. MICAIA talked about creating businesses, about the importance of the forest, of the need to preserve it for our children. I agree, but it isn’t easy. Our families are growing in size and our children need jobs. That was back in 2009, so what has happened since then? Well, MICAIA is still here! MICAIA is our brother. Chief Mpunga smiles, Like any family, we don’t always get on…..but we can talk to MICAIA, they listen. We work things out. The Chief points out some of the changes in his community: We never thought the tourism business would happen, but today we have NDZOU Camp. We have received the Minister and other important people here – Mozambican and feoreigners! The business is small but it’s still there and it will grow. Now we are doing beekeeping. And there are other ideas too, of collecting plants to process and sell. But we have to keep going. I don’t want to see the forest disappear but without money my people will open the forest to make their fields.