Successful Workshop for Trainers on Water Harvesting and Water Efficient Farming

Successful Workshop for Trainers on Water Harvesting and Water Efficient Farming


Due to changing climatic conditions in Swaziland, PELUM Swaziland in partnership with the National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) conducted a workshop for trainers on water harvesting and water efficient farming.

Successful Workshop for Trainers on Water Harvesting and Water Efficient Farming

This workshop was successfully completed at the Guba Permaculture Farm in Malkerns from 31st October to 2nd November 2018. The 35 extension officers and project officers from PELUM’s member organisations who participated in the workshop learned how to harvest water during times of abundance in order to use it in times of scarcity. The participants are now expected to pass on these skills and knowledge to the farmers in their respective communities so that as many people as possible can benefit from the workshop.



On the first day of the workshop Mhlonishwa Mabuza, a Training Officer Guba Farm talked about the water cycle and its disturbances: deforestation and agriculture lead to increased water runoff and consequently, soil erosion. He explained that the latter is accompanied by a reduced capacity of the land to hold moisture. Additionally, rooftops and pavement move rainwater rapidly and directly into streams and rivers via storm drains. This means that numerous human activities prevent the water from soaking into the landscape. These activities are discouraged and water harvesting activities are promoted.

One of these water harvesting activities is greywater cycling. Thanks to the filtration and purification of greywater, it can be used in farming and grow food in very dry periods. Wetlands and use of moringa seeds are two examples of greywater filtration.


The second day of the workshop treated of water-wise practices, such as summer gardening and summer field cropping. By marking a contour line or digging swales – shallow landscapes areas that capture, convey and infiltrate water – stormwater runoffs are lessened. It was explained that the swales can also be planted with trees for creating a complete and healthy ecosystem. Other water-wise practices are ponds that can store the water and the use of compost and animal manure on the soil because it enhances its water holding capacity.


On the third and last day of the workshop the participants discussed afforestation and how through coverage of the ground, the water is kept in place. Additionally, the use of indigenous trees is best because they are drought resilient. The training was followed by a quiz, feedback and the recapitulation.

The three-day workshop was a success and PELUM hopes that the knowledge and skills about water harvesting and water efficient agroecology are spread throughout the country.