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Sihawu is buzzing with activity: Bee Pollination Project

A sweet collaboration is taking root in the fields of Canterbury Estates, and Sihawu Beekeeping. Sihawu has collaborated with Canterburry on a pollination project that is putting sustainability of the clinic in the spotlight and giving back to the community.

The clinic saw an opportunity to undergo an innovative project,partnering with Canterbury Estates, a local farm in Nsoko.  "We essentially rent out our beehives to the farm during their macadamia and avocado blooming seasons," said Nelson Horst, co-director of Sihawu. "The bees provide essential pollination services, and the farm pays us per installed hive. It's a simple concept, but the benefits are far-reaching."  Sihawu Clinic takes the partnership a step further by monitoring the fields for pollinators and generating reports for the farm.  "This additional service adds value for Canterbury Estates," Nelson points out, "and positions us as a reliable partner for their long-term success." 

This project is a hive of opportunity, and it's only set to grow. Sihawu is currently scaling up their operation to meet the increasing demand. They have 25 hives now, but by August, that number needs to jump to 42. Next year, they project needing 98 hives, and 184 the year after that! Sihawu is optimistic that they can surpass these projections, especially because they see the potential to serve other farms in the area as well. This expansion would significantly increase Sihawu's profit margins, allowing them to further invest in their bee pollination operation.

And the sweetest part? The profits generated by the beehives will help support the clinic's medical outreach programs, allowing them to expand their services and reach more members of the community. "We predict this project will be profitable within the next two years.Those profits will go directly to supporting and expanding Sihawu Clinic's vital medical outreach programs." Nelson elaborated.

This project recently received support from a dedicated team of volunteers from the AIM Gap team. 6 young men and women enthusiastically volunteered their time to help with the beekeeping and woodshop project. Their willingness to learn and contribute during their visit has been invaluable to the project.

But Sihawu's vision extends beyond bees and honey. "We're excited to incorporate woodworking production into our program," says Nelson  "This will involve crafting beehives and other sellable products, creating a new revenue stream for the clinic."  But the true heart of this expansion lies in empowering the community.  "The project will offer invaluable training programs to locals in woodworking and beekeeping. We even envision hosting additional programs in upholstery and welding, creating a hub of opportunity and skill development for the people we serve."

It’s quite exciting how this innovative project is a win-win for everyone involved and is a beautiful example of how collaboration can create sustainable and impactful initiatives. We’ll continue to share more on this sustainability initiative as it grows. For now, stay up to date with Sihawu Clinic by following them on Facebook and Instagram.

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