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It has been like a blink of an eye. Nature smiled while it was destroyed by human activity. Maybe if it could notify us or set an alarm, we could do something about it. And that is climate change, looks nothing is happening while nature is responding on the impacts. Might not be directly on spot or tomorrow but we all have something to say now. Then 10 years back 15 years is what we have now. And again, we develop more and more destroyers of the nature. Lack of awareness or believing we are building something greater that will cost the nature.

Pwani region, Mkuranga District meet Mzee Msati at Mdimni village brings forward his story on how and when 436 people lives, changed due to sea level rising. These people who thought Mdimni could be their permanent residence, as has been passed from generation to generation.

"I'm 53 years old and have lived here my entire life." Six generations have gone before me, and I inherited the entire land from my family," says Said Mohamed Msati, who is villager at Mdimni. “I was born and raised here; one thing I know is the rain season that starts from September to early November since we depended on agriculture as our source of income.” Mzee Msati paused for a moment as he collects himself to continue.

"I am a witness to all of the changes and impacts that are happening. I never thought I would live to witness all of this. Starting with seasonal rain, that has shifted from September to no rain at all or erratic rains. We directly depended on rain season for agriculture but slowly changed. I used to have 2000 coconut trees, but now I don't have any." He politely explained how the transformation of periodic rain changed in ways they were unaware of. The villagers were not used to any other way of farming rather waiting for the rain. Families whose income was based on agriculture went bankrupt, and almost all of the villagers faced the threat of starvation as a result of the appearance of different crimes among themselves. It either no rain or heavy rain that brings floods.

Another disaster that the villagers did not see coming was the sea level rising. Mangroves has been one of the products Mdimni villager’s sales. People cuts down the mangroves by the ocean. Not knowing the damage that it can bring 10 to 20 years. “Salty water from the ocean directly affects our rice plantation, too much salt into the fresh water which makes rice plants stagnate” he continues to elaborate also on cashew nuts as one of the basic crops depended by many villagers. But from 300 tones that was minimum one farmer can harvest, to date it is normal not to harvest anything.“That was when I was 15, but past 5 years back didn’t get anything. Salty water beneath ground made the crops to grow weaker every day. Too much sun has made the pollination system difficult. Now if a farmer gets 180 tones it’s a miracle.” He continues again but this time his voice is in grief. “Personal I depend on farming; my main crops are cashew nuts and coconuts. Frankly speaking there’s no hope for harvest this year.” Complained the old man

Mzee Msati enlightens about the drop economically especially to the villagers. Others who were also fishermen have stopped due to unpredictable ocean tides. As a result, there is high living standard that villagers cannot fit in. On top of everything Mzee Msati clarify the argument between farmers and livestock keepers. He explains that, he has witnessed more than 2000 cows into the village searching for pasture. Because there’s no proper places for feeding and also available grass for feeding. These cows tend to engage into their farmers hence leads to conflict. As their only source of income is more likely affected by both natural causes and domestic issues.

“Our incomes have dropped, we are looking forward for five years of hunger ahead of us. We need expert of agriculture and other economic sectors to visit our village and advise us on how to handle all these changes. We would like also to learn other ways of starting economic activities which sustain this new periodic rain. Our Children must understand in details the things you call Climate Change, our government should seek a way of teaching them in school to avoid more destruction of Mangrove forests as we did. Hope wasn’t late. We are ready.” Mzee Msati last words.


It is a non-for-profit, member-based - of over 80 diverse organizations across Tanzania committed to work on climate change issues in Tanzania and beyond.

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