Registered in Lesotho as a non-government organisation since 1991, Rural Self-Help Development Association (RSDA) exists to eradicate extreme hunger and improve the lives of rural Basotho by supporting sustainable agriculture, facilitating self-help and enabling rural communities to become sustainable.

RSDA works with eight dairy associations and over 50 small-scale farming groups organised into federations in Maseru, Mafeteng and Mohale’s Hoek districts.

Our work also reaches out to schools and orphans and vulnerable children (OVC), supporting groups in these two districts, as well as nine Lesotho Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS (LENEPWHA) support groups in Berea district.

RSDA offers technical support to these communities through its experienced, rural-based project staff. We do this thanks to the generous support of the research, crops and livestock departments of the Lesotho Government’s Ministry of Agriculture and various international partner agencies. RSDA’s current and most recent international partners include:

■ Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID)
■ Common Fund for Commodities (CFC)
■ Danish-Lesotho Network (DLN)
■ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
■ Golden Valley Agricultural Research Trust (GART), Zambia
■ Global Environment Facility (GEF)
■ Southern African HIV and AIDS Information Dissemination Service (SAfAIDS)
■ Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida)
■ United States Agency for International Development (USAID)
■ Catholic Relief Services (CRS)
■ Irish Aid
■ ActionAid Lesotho (AAL)

RSDA Vision
A Lesotho where every person’s right to quality food is assured.

RSDA Mission
To be a leading agricultural advisory services agency that supports farmers in Lesotho by providing services, capacity building and advocacy support for sustainable agriculture and value addition and marketing of farmer’s products. RSDA will enhance livelihoods and build resilient communities by helping people to help themselves, working collaboratively and in partnership with other stakeholders.

Strategic Goals and Objectives
To achieve the Vision and Mission of RSDA, the following strategic goals have been identified to guide RSDA work for 2013-2017. To deliver on these strategic goals detailed objectives have been developed relating to each area. These objectives provide structure for strategic decision making and allocation/distribution of RSDA resources and activities for 2013-2017.

RSDA’s governance structure comprises the Board of Directors and the association’s management team, led by the Managing Director, Mrs ’Mampho Thulo.

The Board sets the strategic direction and establishes the policies that shape the organisation’s operations. The Board monitors RSDA’s financial position, business affairs, appoints auditors and approves budgets and plans.

The RSDA Board comprises:

■ Mr Makhema Mats’aba, Chairperson
■ Mr Leutloileng Matsepe, Representative of the Principal Chiefs
■ Mr Letlamoreng Lehloenya
■ Mr Bethuel Lesekele
■ Mr Liteboho Mofubetsoana

Organisational Assets
RSDA’s headquarters is located at Stadium Area, Maseru. The office has several individual offices, including a large meeting room, networked computer system, telephone switchboard, fax/scanner, photocopier, Internet and colour laser printer. Other RSDA assets include a chicken hatchery and dairy cow breeding and rearing centre. Field work is conducted using a small fleet of vehicles. Field offices are also located at HaNotši in Mafeteng district and at Shalane village, Phamong area, in Mohale’s Hoek district. RSDA has demonstration fields at both locations. A training centre is expected to be added to the HaNotši site.

RSDA receives 95 percent of its financial resources from its funding partners and sub-contract implementation work for government and other agencies. RSDA has several income-generating streams, including a hammer mill, chicken hatchery and dairy cow breeding and rearing centre.

Financial Management
RSDA’s Board of Directors has appointed Moores Rowland chartered accountants, a member of Praxity global alliance of international firms, as auditors. The accounts are audited annually and interim half-annual audited accounts are also produced. RSDA uses Pastel computer software for its accounts.

National Affiliations and Recognition
RSDA is a member of the Lesotho Council of NGOs (LCN) and Pelum Lesotho, an organisation focused on promoting sustainable agriculture and resource management through community-based activities. Since inception, RSDA has developed strong links with several government ministries, particularly the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security and the Ministry of Forestry and Land Reclamation. RSDA has won important contracts from both to perform research work on agriculture, forestry and land reclamation projects. RSDA is currently building its connections with government through its HIV/Aids mitigation work by building relationships with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and National AIDS Commission (NAC).

Regional Collaboration
RSDA works collaboratively with Zambian partner organisation the Golden Valley Agricultural Research Trust (GART) on many of its projects.