Client – Netherlands Partnership Program – FAO
Location – Massingir – Mozambique
Year – 2005 – 2006
Time – 6 months

The purpose of this study was to provide a detailed baseline analysis showing how the Covane Lodge (Eco-Tourism) in the Limpopo National Park affected the development and food security of the local economy, and to assess whether the observed results would have a chance to bring long-term development.

Verde Azul developed and presented a case study report, which led to new discoveries and revisions for the Limpopo National Park, and also resulted in changes in the National Rural Development Strategies in the area of Tourism.

The results were based on a collection of qualitative data from primary documents about Covane Community Lodge and the land delimitation process.

Of particular interest, in this “hands-on” approach to assessing the impact on rural livelihoods, is the importance of non-agricultural activities in rural families and communities.

Verde Azul concluded that crucial aspects include local participation in development planning and strategy, that there is a clear link between investment in the community and the increase in private property, and the creation of a market-oriented project accompanied by an improvement training and education and community involvement in tourism initiatives. The backbone, for this, is a well-developed and implemented communication strategy.

The project collected information through several actors:

a) A community-wide survey that served as the basis for a longitudinal survey over a period of 2 – 3 years and a field study carried out at the end of this process;
b) Interviews with key informants in Maputo, Gaza (Xai-Xai, Massingir and Canhane) and several meetings with six Canhane focus groups.

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