Palms for Life Fund was formally established as a local NGO in Swaziland in 2011.
Palms for Life Fund has been active in Swaziland since 2009 when it initiated a proposal to USAID for a large scale social development project with the participation of 120 public schools in all four regions of the country. The project completed after 3 and ½ years of activities. It worked mostly in rural, disadvantaged primary schools to support the development of critical water, hygiene and sanitation systems, including school-run management systems, and the knock-on development of school feeding gardens . Through this program, Palms for Life was able to build its own capacity in Swaziland to develop and deliver these social services with the participating 120 schools, impacting 42,000 school children and the surrounding communities.
The local capacity includes a complete well equipped office with local professional staff, consultants and 3rd level oversight. Services included: vital partnerships with supporting Government entities and other non-state actors; technical skills; development of mechanisms including a comprehensive field monitoring programme; and the establishment of clear and measurable monitoring and evaluation systems/tools. Significant lessons were learned during this project in issues related to environmental and social sustainability, in community participation, responsibility and ownership and in sensitization. Results range from actual outputs such as number of latrines and water systems built, and number of schoolgardens established, to changes of behavior such as the washing of hands with soap after using the latrines and the use of vegetables in the schools’ kitchens and in the homesteads.
We have just begun our second project in Swaziland, thanks to funding by the EU.
More on that here.