The Irish public were introduced to siblings No Matter and Forward when they appeared on the Trócaire Lenten Box in 2022. Their mother Thandekile Ncube from Matobo District in Southern Zimbabwe was struggling to provide for her family due to the effects of climate change on their community and the passing of her husband Donovan to Covid-19.
Thanks to the support of the Irish people during the 2022 Lenten Appeal, Trócaire and partner organisation Caritas Bulawayo have been working closely with communities in the Matobo district. This included setting up and managing a community garden with an agroecology learning centre and a seedbank as well as working with families who have been affected by market and business closures, and restrictions on movement during the prolonged Covid-19 lockdowns.
Today, No Matter and Forward are still in school and are doing well. Forward is now 9 and in Grade 3 and No Matter is 12 and in Grade 7. Thandekile hopes she will be able to keep the children in school despite the rising cost of school fees.
Her determination to create a good life for her children is evident in her choice of names for them. Their names, Nomatter and Forward, are a daily reminder that despite the challenges the family faces, they will continue to remain positive and look towards a brighter future.
Thandekile said she and local farmers are continuing to cultivate maize, groundnuts, and some small grains (sesame, millet). She has also diversified her income through the harvesting of Mopane worms, a sought after, protein-rich food source common in the area.
Trócaire’s Christmas Gifts
Trócaire’s gifts include favourites like beehives (€65) for drought-stricken farmers in the Horn of Africa to school kits (€30) and lunches (€20) for children across the world. With 22 to choose from, ranging from €5 to €1,400, each Trócaire gift will support critical work across the developing world.
The gifts can be purchased online at www.trocaire.org/gifts or by calling 1800 408 408.
Trócaire Gifts 2023