An appraisal of the Vulamehlo Handcraft project

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Oxford, UK: Routledge, part of the Taylor & Francis Group


This paper assesses a handcraft project in South Africa created in 1997. The Vulamehlo handcraft project was created for Zulu women to enable them to generate income by selling items they make from resources collected within the reserve. This project was part of the neighbor relations policy. The study used a mixture of qualitative and quantitative methods to assess the project. Women had support from the Spioenkop Nature Reserve's (SNR) staff with resource harvesting, crafting, marketing, banking and providing training. Women met in a center, creating a space for socialization and experience exchange. The items were then sold in the SNR shop for the women. Results show that the project brought significant individual and community economic benefit, and it has also improved collaboration and social interactions. This study recommends that other local markets should be supplied with the women's handcrafts.


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Women, Training, Social impacts, Economic impacts, Income generation, Zulu, South africa, Methodology, Handcraft project, Spioenkop nature reserve (SNR)


Development Southern Africa 18(2): 239-252