Where do we work?

Zisize - The Heaton Lee Memorial Trust is a UK charity based in South Wales. However, it was set up primarily to be a vehicle for help to find its way into Ingwavuma, a remote rural area of KwaZuluNatal in South Africa. Ingwavuma is more than 155 miles away from the nearest industrial centre, Richards Bay, and 260 miles from Durban. Rarely is it to be found on maps of the area (map of KZN on right) and many people in the province have never heard of it. It stretches the length of the border with Swaziland and up to the border with Mozambique.

Zisize's projects (labelled in black on the map below) are in several locations in three of Ingwavuma's four tribal areas, and up to 40 miles from the centre of Ingwavuma.

1 = Ekuhlehleni; 2 = Manyiseni; 3 = Mayaluka; 4 = Mgedula; 5 = Okhayeni; 5a = Ohhoye; 6 = Entabayengwe; 6a = Nqobizazi; 7 = Mpontshini; 8 = Zisize KwaQatha Centre; 9 = Mbalekelwa; 10 = Our Lady; 11 = Ingwavuma High.

Its remote location, high in the Lebombo mountains, renders it beautiful, unspoilt but extremely poor. Most people live in self built houses like the ones below. (stone and cement house - left; one made from stick and stones - right)

Many homes are in varying states of disrepair when parents are sick and children left to cope alone when parents die. (below) Several UK supporters have funded new homes for four such families.
Ingwavuma River (above) as it appears during frequent droughts
Although there is now a tar road linking the centre of Ingwavuma to the main road from Jozini to Kosi Bay, all other roads are rough dirt tracks, many only passable by 4x4 or by foot. The picture above shows one of the better ones.

Most people live without electricity, using candles for light and bottled gas or wood for cooking. Water is collected from springs, bore holes, rivers and, where these are in place, from communal metered standpipes. Water collection is mainly the responsibility of children. These containers are 20 or 25 litres.

Collecting water from a spring (above) and from the river (below)
Getting water from a borehole is hard work (above)

Below two nine year olds beginning the trek back up from the river
Frequent droughts have caused major problems in an area dependent on subsistence farming for survival.
Unemployment and illiteracy rates are high, as is the incidence of HIV and AIDS. Children in many communities come to school hungry and for many their only meal is the one they receive at school during term time.

Children are taught in large classes (80 is not uncommon) in rooms sometimes more suited to animal than human occupation.

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