As oceans warm, Zanzibar’s women sea farmers grow sponges to stay afloat

  • Published by Reuters on 6th August 2021
    Nasir Hassan Haji holds up her harvested sponges in a bag from her home in Jambiani in Zanzibar, Tanzania. June 21, 2021. PHOTO | Thomson Reuters Foundation
  • Nasir Hassan Haji never thought of herself as a farmer or a swimmer, but as she waded into Zanzibar’s blue waters with goggles pulled over her headscarf to examine her floating sponge farm, she realised she had surprised herself by becoming both.
  • Alongside 12 other women in Jambiani village on the Indian Ocean coast, Haji has come to rely on the climate-resilient, natural sponges bobbing on thick ropes where they grow for months before the women harvest, clean and sell them to shops and tourists.
  • “I learned to swim and to farm sponges so I could be free and not depend on any man,” Haji said later, sitting on the floor in her home on the Tanzanian island.


PHP Code Snippets Powered By :