The effects of climate change are being felt across the globe, and South Africa is not spared from these implications. Like in many other developing countries, the burden will weigh on the most vulnerable of the society. Climate change threatens livelihoods, infrastructure and the development gains of the country. Agriculture is central to the livelihoods of women in South Africa, and especially women in rural areas. Women bear the responsibility of securing and distributing food for their households and communities. How much do women in rural communities know about climate change and how it affects food security? How equipped are they to respond to the challenges as posed by climate change? The CPLO hosted a roundtable discussion, creating a platform for engaging on the level of awareness for women in rural areas about climate change and its impacts on food security. Amidst the speakers were Ms Dorah Marema from GenderCC-Southern Africa, Dr Ikalafeng Kgakatsi and Ms Seneo Madikiza from the National Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. Participants from civil society organisations, faith based organisations, and business formed part of the discussion. It was acknowledged that rural women are the most vulnerable, and are also crucial missing link in addressing climate change. Suggestions and questions were posed on how do we empower women and give them opportunities to contribute in addressing issues of climate change, to ensure food security in the country.
L-R: Ms Lovedonia Mkansi (Project Co-ordinator, CPLO); Fr Peter-John Pearson (Director, CPLO); Ms Dorah Marema; Ms Seneo Madikiza; and Dr Ikalafeng Kgakatsi