Take a look into the relocated villages that the Mozambiquen government has provided to the floodland residents.
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Relocating Flooded Villages in Zimbawe
Narrator: Rising sea level and flooding, thanks to climate change just became a global problem, and the Mozambique government’s solution is to make extraordinary programs on social engineering.
Over the past three years, 55,000 families around the quarter of a million people have been persuaded to move from the delta lowlands to 55 new resettlement villages built on higher ground that’s safe from flooding.
Zimbawe village is named after Helena Magazo Zimbawe, the only female chief in the delta.
Helena Magazo Zimbawe: Hello, I’ve come to visit your house. Do you understand?
Female: She carries out regular inspections to ensure that the new houses are being looked after as she liked.
Helena Magazo Zimbawe: You need to clean up outside and make it look beautiful and clean the toilets in the morning. Excuse me, I want to visit this house. What’s the meaning of this? You have left things all over the place. We’re going now but it will be good if you get things tidied up. Everything should be in the right place.
Narrator: The queen, as she is known to her followers persuaded her people to moved from the lowlands to what is now the show piece resettlement village built with help from the government and an Islamic charity.
Here, they have clean water, a school, a clinic and safety.
Helena Magazo Zimbawe: I feel good because here we are not being destroyed by the water. Although there was my homeland, we were relaxed because we were frightened of the floods and whether we would have to leave. We lived in fear of the water but now we are here to stay. We have built houses so we would be crazy to go back.
Narrator: Most of her villagers agree. In Zimbawe, Ense John has a water pump just a few yards from the new home. She lives here with her husband Domingo Waldemar and four children. They have spent their lives in a modern red house down by the river, but now they lived in a brick house in a new village with its own school and clinic and there is no danger of flooding.
Domingo Waldemar: I was afraid with the floods but now we’re in a much higher place so it’s much better. We won’t suddenly have to grab our positions and run away. It’s much better here.
Narrator: But like the other villagers, Waldemar and Ense have a problem. The best area for farming is not on the high ground around the new village but back in the lowlands where they used to live.
So every morning, Domingo Waldemar and his wife and child must walk and travel by canoe back to their farmlands. It’s a journey that can take between one and two hours each way, but it’s worth it.
Domingo Waldemar: I come this far to do my farming so I can have something to eat, but the only problem here is the water. There were floods here last year before the harvest. The land here is very fertile. Everything you plant it grows from banana and sugar cane to pumpkins.
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