The study investigated the communication practices of the Kodumela Peanut-butter development project (KPDP). The project was initiated and established by unemployed women of Puleng village. The research made use of unstructured interviews, participant observation and unobtrusive measures to gather information about the communication practices at the KPDP. It has been noted that the education level of most of these women is low, and they cannot understand, read and write English. The language of communication is Pedi. This language is used during meetings and during informal discussions within the project. The investigation has shown that oral communication dominates other in this project. The KPDP members prefer using participatory communication, as it allows all members to actively participate by means of asking and responding to questions raised. The project makes minimum use of other means of communication such as written communication because most members are illiterate. The financial donors who have assisted the KPDP to become what it is today monitor the day to day running of the project. The women who started the project together with the donors have a smooth running communication system in place for communicating with their donors. The communication system is based on mutual trust and respect for both parties. The donors respect the beneficiaries’ needs, and assist them according to their needs. The bottom-up communication flow has kept the project going. The research report recommends that the women in the project who are responsible for running the day-to-day business of the project attend a literacy program, which will assist them in running the project more efficiently and effectively if they want to compete on the national and international market. The project is doing extremely well at community level but its members want the project to grow bigger not just at community level but at national level as well. Their illiteracy has become a barrier in communicating with people outside the project who are interested in their project.
Dissertation (MA (Development Communication))--University of Pretoria, 2007.