After a three-year drought, rain came to Zimbabwe. But far too much. In Matabeleland there was five times the rainfall of an average rainy season. Result: nutrients were washed out of the sandy soils. Many subsistence farmers were too poor to buy anything to fertilise their fields and suffered almost total crop failure.
Add to that the locusts and fall armyworm caterpillars that swept across Zimbabwe this year devouring the growing maize.
Then elephants destroyed the entire harvest of the community in Shabula, Matabeleland North, just days before it was going to be gathered in.
Many poor rural families used to have one or two members working in the cities, sending their wages back home. But Covid-19 has caused massive loss of urban jobs, so families have lost this income.
As prices increase, people have begun to barter instead of paying money. So they are depleting their meagre stores of maize by exchanging it for basic goods such as soap, tea etc.
Hunger and sickness
In June 50% of households in Matabeleland South said their stocks of grain would run out in less than three months. Now it is October.
Our Zimbabwean project partners reported a fortnight ago that most households were managing two meals a day, with 20% surviving on just one meal a day.
Rich in faith
From a microscopic virus to the largest land mammal, from rain clouds to soil types, everything seems stacked against our needy brothers and sisters in Zimbabwe.
But they are rich in one thing: faith in the Lord Jesus Christ – a faith that does not falter or fail.
ePap to bring strength and health
Eating nothing but maize for months or years brings with it a raft of malnutrition symptoms and diseases caused by deficiencies in micronutrients.
Barnabas Fund is providing ePap to desperately hungry Christian families in Zimbabwe. The nourishing protein-rich porridge, fortified with vitamins and minerals, brings health and strength in a matter of weeks.
Just £19 ($24; €21) will provide enough ePap to nourish an older child or adult for four months. That is only 15p a day.
Children aged six or younger need only half that amount to get all the nutrients they need.
Please give now.