A GROUP of 52 cooperatives in the small town of Matatiele have joined together to fulfil objectives such as fighting poverty, unemployment, lack of skills and drug abuse. Nomawethu Moshoeshoe, one of the cooperatives, said their mandate is to develop the rural areas and help young people.“We work with the Department of Social Development to identify orphans in need of help. We want to open a rehabilitation centre in Matatiele because many young people who want to stop using drugs get rejected because there is not enough space in the Eastern Cape Province,” she said. She said young people are vulnerable as a result of lack of employment and skills. To end that, she said they will work with companies to provide skills. Last Thursday, November 22, members of the cooperatives who produce crops received seeds from sponsors to start growing their own vegetables. This was handed over at an event held at Mgubo village in Matatiele. Sponsors promised to support agriculture in Matatiele. The event was part of celebrating the #GreeningMatat campaign, with the aim of fighting poverty through agriculture and helping small cooperatives. At the event, cooperatives promised to begin farming and producing vegetables as a way to fight poverty and to help young people with agricultural skills.