Herders leave their community and the loved ones for long stay at the animal posts without coming back to the society. Some travel days to the areas allocated for animal posts. Herders are engaged on a period of at least 12 months after which one gets a cow as the wage before getting into the next term arrangements. Herders are forced by unemployment to look after animals. In Lesotho, boys is more disadvantaged than girls. Boys drop out of or not attend school at all and look after animals. Although there is free primary education in Lesotho, law enforcement has never been effective hence most boys drop out of school from primary education level. In the animal posts herders would have a feeling of loneliness, trauma from the harsh weathers, poor shelter, unsafe environment, disconnection from the society. During the day they let their animals graze unattended while they sit in small groups to share life experience in the animal posts.
Away from social life might affect their emotions resulting in seeing life differently. This is the main reason gender based violence is high in Lesotho. Herders who lived out of social life at some stage will have to have families without proper orientation. Unattended animals would eat palatable grass and run all over for such. This is the reason shrubs have over covered the grass; signs of soil erosion are visible as well as destruction of the wetlands. Herders are not educated. They don’t receive information and trainings on rangeland management. Most institutions target adults with awareness and information; farmers instead of herders hence degradation of land in Lesotho.
Of arrivals: The GIZ programme, Participatory Initiative for Social Accountability (PISA) contributes to increased citizens’ participation in democratic and development processes. Communities were reached out with awareness and knowledge, hence the ‘Of arrival’ for herders. The dialogue was conducted by PISA. The dialogue participants proposed solutions to their issue and commitment to connect herders with society through frequent contact with families, review herders working conditions, participation in democratic processes and mobilising service providers to rent services to them. On 21 November 2017 citizens organised an event where herders were, for the first time called to the community while farmers take responsibility over animals. This was to facilitate herders’ participation in public matters and contact with society. Informed and inspired citizens can take responsibility and make a difference. Independent electoral Commission came to register herders’ as electorates and other service providers for their services. Other community councils in the district have shown interest to replicate this idea into their areas so that their development interventions are inclusive.