Drought inspires KZN farmer to lend a helping hand

2016-05-24 09:06
Zuivergoud Farm owner JJ de Velde stands atop bales of hay that he donated to struggling farmers in Hluhluwe.

Zuivergoud Farm owner JJ de Velde stands atop bales of hay that he donated to struggling farmers in Hluhluwe. (Jonathan Burton, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - A Nottingham Road farmer and his son have donated 800 bales of hay to farmers suffering from the crippling drought in Hluhlwe.

Zuivergoud Farm owner JJ de Velde was watching Carte Blanche one evening when he saw a segment on a farmer in desperate need in the Karoo.

“The farmers are experiencing a big drought and it has been very difficult for us all,” said De Velde.

“When I saw that farmer on Carte Blanche, he had such a hopeless look about him, it struck a chord and I wanted to help.”

He said he knew some areas of KwaZulu-Natal had been hit harder by the drought than his farm and after a “good potato season”, he wanted to give back where he could.

“I do not have any cattle so I decided to donate the hay to people who really needed it.”

De Velde said he called the KwaZulu-Natal Agricultural Union (Kwanalu) which said Zululand was in dire need of assistance.

A statement by Urban House Media said De Velde and his son spent hours, using their own resources, and buying equipment specially to bale the hay.

De Velde said he approached Bencor Boerdery to transport the hay and said their assistance was a “complete gift”.

The hay was transported to Hluhluwe Farmers’ Association leader PJ Hassard, where the hay will be distributed to farmers in Hluhluwe on Tuesday.

De Velde said he felt “good” that he had been able to help other farmers. “I was able to give back and if other farmers feel they can help in some way, I urge them to do so,” he said.

“The drought is still here and it is going to be worse during winter. I don’t want farmers who are struggling to feel alone because those who can help, will.”

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  drought  |  good news  |  agriculture

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