Pro Africa Development Trust is a local NGO registered as a Trust in August 2000 with the aim to assist communities in Zimbabwe in prioritizing their needs in order to come up with proposals for economical viable projects and to source funding for the same.
Due to the devastating droughts of 1982, 1985 and 1992 which wiped out livestock and caused widespread food and water shortages in Matabeleland South Province of Zimbabwe, the basic needs of the rural population became compromised.
In response to the misfortunes of the rural population, a number of Non Governmental organizations, Government of Zimbabwe through its various ministries and UNDP came together and formed a consortium known as the “Give A Dam Campaign’. This consortium, the first of its kind in Zimbabwe was tasked to tackle the root cause of Matabeleland South’s perennial problems of droughts, food and water shortages. From 1995 to 2001, 47 dams had been completed with the full participation of the benefiting local communities. This approach was to prove to be sustainable as the communities became the owners of the dams and irrigation schemes thus becoming responsible for the maintenance of the dams through their elected committees.
Despite the wonderful successes in dam construction, irrigation development did not take off fast enough as evidenced by the establishment of only 8 irrigation schemes by 2001 thus not addressing the food deficit in the region. Pro Africa Development Trust, made a deliberate policy to source funding for the establishment of gravity fed irrigation schemes below the completed dams.