By Martin Chiwanda MANA

Communities in Machinga district have said Climate Smart Enhanced Public Works Programme (CS-EPWP) has potential to transform the resilience and economic standing of the poor in addition to helping them to be food secure during lean period.

The communities said this when Malawi News Agency visited their catchment areas where phase two of the programme has started.

Rajab John, from Group Village Head Napwanga, said he is optimistic the money he will get after working in the programme will empower him economically and also help achieve food security at household level.

“I am happy that we have started working after sometime. Right now we are doing swales construction that can protect soil from being washed away and bring some disasters in our area.

“While we are trying to conserve our natural resources by doing such works, we are also benefiting economically through the money we are going to receive after working for 24 days. This money will help our families, as this time we are food insecure but also make some savings through village savings and loans groups,” he said.

Loviness Msonkho from Kasongo Village said though the money is not enough, considering the devaluation of the Malawi kwacha, it still addresses economic challenges in her family.

Msonkho further said that what government is doing should be commended as people are being paid on the works that would have been done for free.

Machinga district environmental officer Hamza Mussa concurred with the sentiments by other community members, saying CS-EPWP is helping poor communities by creating resilience and improving livelihoods.

“The programme is enhancing community participation in public works and eliminating poverty. Communities are the principle beneficiaries of the programme, as they are conserving their natural resources and at the same time being empowered economically,” he said.

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