Dispatch from Lesotho
Tebellong, Lesotho - 10 December 2007 - by Richard Lee
Despite the worst drought in 30 years, farmers in Lesotho have produced enough food to feed themselves and their families - and sell the World Food Programme what's left over. WFP spokesperson Richard Lee visited a group of farmers who are looking forward to a brighter future thanks to WFP purchasing their food.
For the first time in her life, 52-year-old Maleetoane Khali has money. Not a lot but enough to send her older children to school and to buy previously unaffordable necessities like soap and salt. More importantly, the money has made her believe that she can permanently pull her family out of poverty and hunger. The source of her new found ‘wealth’ is the World Food Programme (WFP).
But Khali is not a beneficiary. Nor did she receive a hand-out. Instead, she was paid a fair price for the surplus crops she produced – part of a historic deal that saw WFP buy maize from small-scale farmers in Lesotho for the very first time.