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'Start thinking Zimbabwe'

by Kennedy Mapesa Mandaza
15 Jul 2014 at 17:36hrs | Views

After a week-long community leadership workshop held at Manhenga Business Centre in Masembura, Bindura District, the Founder and President of Breakthrough Partners Gray Edmonds, urged the executive of Masembura Musana Development Association (MAMUDA) to start thinking of Zimbabwe as a whole.

The workshop aimed at beginning a process of BtP and MAMUDA walking together in trusted relationships meant to breakdown, build and breakthrough the barriers and put in place new systems for sustainable development that will activate collective hope, ownership and use of God-given resources in our communities.

The objectives of  workshop, which ran from June 30 to July 5, 2014 were to ensure that local leaders are better equipped and ready to work together in unity toward a shared vision of healthy, hope-filled and abundant community. Leaders would be able to identify and use what God has already put in the hands of the communities for their development, and abandon the donor syndrome.

Through this well structured and facilitated workshop participants were encouraged to form collaborative teams which would work in their communities to implement the vision that God has given the community for its own wellness and transformation, thereby leading to communities becoming self-supporting, self-initiating and self-sustainable.

Participants in this workshop included the MAMUDA executive members, coordinators of the 13 wards in Musana and Masembura, Bindura Rural District council chairman, councillors, Chiefs Musana and Masembura, village heads and political leaders. Gary Edmonds who was the facilitator urged participants to understand that development starts from inside using what you have. He emphasised that communities can develop if people begin to appreciate and make use of what God has endowed their communities with and shun the donor syndrome.

Gary Edmonds highlighted that Africa has in the past received more than US$20 billion in donor aid but has remained poor. This, he said, was because most donor aid is not meant to address community challenges and that projects to which the aid is channelled  are not initiated by the communities. Hence, he called upon leaders to be self-initiating, self-supporting and be masters of their own destiny. Gary emphasised that the success of all this is premised on a healthy and strong relationship among community members. This call, by BtP resonates very well with the call which has been made by President Robert Mugabe that Zimbabweans should be masters of their own destiny.

MAMUDA and BtP paid a courtesy call on the Senior Minister in the President's Office

MAMUDA was really thankful of the interest that the participants showed during the workshop. The presence of the two chiefs signified hope, encouragement and trust that they have in the development association. It was an affirmation that team leadership and team work are critical components in community development.

Gary summed up the workshop by quoting from the Holy Bible, that a torch has been lit, and that the light that has been lit cannot be covered. MAMUDA is the torch and its light cannot be covered. It is for this reason that the knowledge learnt during this workshop should see renewed vigour and changed attitudes among the Masembura and Musana communities in identifying, and implementing self initiated development projects. Equally important for Gary, Breakthrough Partners and MAMUDA is that knowledge acquired should cascade to all other 51 districts in Zimbabwe. Hence, MAMUDA should 'start thinking of Zimbabwe."

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Source - Kennedy Mapesa Mandaza