Wef Nexus Festival


Exciting News: Water-Energy-Food Nexus Festival’s Grand Kickoff!

Welcome to the first day of the Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus Festival! Get ready to embark on a journey that intertwines sustainability, development, and social justice in a joyful celebration of progress. The WEF nexus, a globally recognized integrated approach, takes center stage, bringing together minds and hearts to address the pressing challenges facing communities, especially, in rural areas in South Africa.

As part of a three-year-long consortium, this festival is a culmination of dedicated efforts to raise awareness and foster knowledge on critical issues. Through the festival, we aim to connect relevant stakeholders, discuss local solutions, and share findings from our extensive research project, encompassing 1,500 household surveys, focus group discussions, interviews, and policy analyses in South Africa.

The joyous atmosphere of the festival sets the tone for collaborative efforts and shared knowledge, fostering connections that will pave the way for inclusive decision-making and improved access to water, energy, and food.

A sincere thank you to all our speakers, presenters, school children from Mechealing J.S.S, and the diverse range of community representatives. Your valuable insights have played a crucial role in making the Water-Energy-Food Nexus Festival a success. We appreciate your dedication to fostering positive change and look forward to continued collaboration in shaping a sustainable and just future for all.


Day 2 of the Water Energy Food Festival saw inspiring discussions across three crucial sectors: water, energy, and food. Here’s a glimpse into the insightful conversations:

Water Group: Explored Nkasela’s spring, protected by community artisans with support from ERS, providing clean water to over 700 community members. Cost-effective solutions like these demonstrate the power of preserving our water table. The discussion also highlighted the importance of community involvement in maintaining these resources and ensuring long-term sustainability. Participants left with a deeper understanding of how access to clean water not only improves health but also fosters economic development and social cohesion.

Energy Group: Delved into responsible wattle clearing, not just combating alien invasive plants, but also creating jobs and sustainable charcoal production. From local restaurants to global markets, the impact is far-reaching. Participants witnessed firsthand the transformation of cleared wattle into high-quality charcoal, learning about the process from harvesting to packaging. They also discussed the potential for similar initiatives to address environmental challenges while generating income and fostering community resilience.

Food Group: Embraced agro-ecology, emphasizing sustainable farming practices like crop rotation and seed sharing to mitigate climate change. Gratitude to sponsors like Sustaining The Wild Coast and Siyazisiza Trust for their invaluable support. In addition to discussing farming techniques, participants explored the broader implications of food production on environmental sustainability and food security. The session highlighted the potential for regenerative agriculture to not only nourish communities but also restore ecosystems and mitigate climate change.

Investing in initiatives like these isn’t just about returns, it’s about investing in a sustainable future for all.


Day three of the festival was marked by dynamic discussions led by esteemed facilitators Dr. Fronika de Wit from Universiteit Utrecht and Dr. Alios Mugadza from the University of Groningen. These discussions centered on implementing better practices for enhanced social justice, highlighting the interconnectedness of water, energy, and food systems.

The synergy between the groups led to strategizing solutions and policy influence for local communities. The festival expressed gratitude to sponsors such as Sustaining The Wild Coast and Siyazisiza Trust for their support, enriching the festival with impactful ventures and innovative solutions. 

The Water-Energy-Food Nexus Festival in Matatiele stands as a testament to the power of collaborative research and community-driven initiatives in addressing complex challenges and fostering sustainable development.

NRF Participates in the   WEF Nexus Festival


Following the Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus Stakeholders’ Meeting that was held from 29 February to 01 March 2024 in South Africa….

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