where we work
Mpumalanga Province in South Africa
Most of Seeds of Light’s projects are located in Mpumalanga Province. This is a particularly beautiful part of South Africa with a variety of terrains—mountains, forests, rolling savanna and the vast Blyde River Canyon World Heritage site. Its climate is mild in most areas, and the vegetation ranges from sub-tropical to bushveld. There are many game reserves supporting tourism where visitors can view the African animals in their natural habitat in five-star surroundings. The world famous Kruger National Park, South Africa’s largest game reserve, renowned for its huge variety of African animals is also located there.
Living conditions are still primitive. Most homes lack running water, and many still lack electricity. Water is hand-carried from wells in barrels and wheelbarrows. The municipal water system is inadequate with spigots separated by long distances. There is little commerce, and unemployment is about 60-70%. Villagers who are employed mostly work for minimum wages as laborers on neighboring farms. Roughly one in three people in Acornhoek is HIV-positive. Many people go hungry, and the orphan population continues to increase. Seeds of Light has initiated several projects to uplift the area, and as a result, life is beginning to stir in new and inspiring ways.
Mpumalanga province has some of the Apartheid era “homelands”—vast, undeveloped areas that have been forgotten and neglected. One such area is Acornhoek, which is in a remote part of Mpumalanga with a population of about 150,000 people. It is one of South Africa’s most impoverished communities.