Over 3,000 people were supported, and in one of the camps the displaced older people said that of all the agencies that delivered aid, "Vukoxa is the King". Once the flooding had abated, elderly members of the communities cleaned their agricultural machines and tools, and cleared 30 hectares of affected land for agricultural use. With the diverted funds, Vukoxa were able to purchase 450 kg of seeds for the communities to plant. By late May, they were starting to harvest vegetables and corn again, and have used the money from the sale of the resulting produce to replace livestock lost to the floods.
The Vukoxa office, which had been completely submerged, was re-established and Vukoxa resumed their activities helping older people and the vulnerable children in their care. This year, Vukoxa has even been able to expand their support to an additional two communities in the district, and is directly helping 500 orphaned and vulnerable children, 260 older people carers and 75 HIV sufferers.
Vukoxa, and the communities they support, showed extraordinary energy and resilience in the face of the devastation wrought by the floods. An example of the dedicated and determined local organisations that improve the lives of those affected by HIV & AIDS and that Egmont continues to support.
This story first appeared in Egmont Grassroots - 2014 Issue 1.