Feminisation of poverty for medicinal plant sellers: A case study in Northern Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa
The purpose of this study was to explore the major role players in the medicinal plant selling business in northern KwaZulu-Natal and then expose them to a non-formal educational capacity building intervention to assist them develop further skills in identified areas of need. Principles of Education for Sustainable Development constituted the theoretical framework for the study.The study followed a case study design, within a mixed-methods research paradigm. Data collection involved the use of face-to-face questionnaire administration and follow-up focused group interviews. Following a capacity building intervention the results showed that the medicinal plant sellers had started revisiting some of their business practices. In particular, sustainable harvesting practices and cultivation of medicinal plants in home gardens still presented some difficulties – including the non-availability of land. The land issue appeared to be related to the matter of land ownership, particularly given that the majority of the medicinal plant sellers were women.
Key words: KwaZulu-Natal, medicinal plants, feminisation, educational for sustainable development