Innovative Development Solutions

Latest news

November 2015: SABC television visits MpfunekoCS for a story on its biogas project in Giyani, which will be broadcasted on South African national television in a XiTsonga spoken programme called Ngula ya vutivi, which means ‘Source of Knowledge’.

June 2015: Ekko van Ierland, Board member of IDS Foundation, visits MpfunekoCS, in combination with a family visit (all travel and hosting expenses are on his own account). He advised on the acquisition of new projects and the organisation of the administration. Also technical aspects of the digesters have been discussed. He also assisted in the maintenance of the cars.

August 2015: Jotte van Ierland, Founder of MpfunekoCS, resigns as Managing Director of MpfunekoCS in order for locally trained staff to take over his position. Ms Ripfumelo Chabalala, Ms Shirley Matsimbi and Ms Crecious Vongani have been appointed as Directors of MpfunekoCS, while Jotte will continue to be employed by MpfunekoCS to provide assistance on technical and management issues.

May 2015: Martien Würdemann, president of the Board of IDS visits MpfunekoCS, in combination with a family visit (all travel and hosting expenses are on his own account). He is informed about the progress of the various digesters in and around Gawula as well as about MpfunekoCS’s other activities and situation. A large number of digesters have been constructed for ICCO, EEP and Work for Energy, several others are presently under construction or in the commissioning phase. It is concluded that commissioning needs extra emphasis in the near future. A report of his visit is attached to the website of IDS.

November 2014: Ekko van Ierland, Board member of IDS Foundation visits MpfunekoCS, in combination with a family visit (all travel and hosting expenses are on his own account). The complexities of the organisation were discussed and support was given for the completion of the reports to be delivered to the funding agencies of MpfunekoCS. The organization of MpfunekoCS has further improved, but it remains complex to make progress according to the schedule because of financial constraints and the required training of new employees.

May 2014: Roy Pasman starts his internship at MpfunekoCS. Roy will be doing a research project on the risks and organisation of the construction process for biogas digesters at MpfunekoCS as part of his final bachelor assignment in civil engineering education at the University of Twente. The outcome of this research project will assist MpfunekoCS to better organise its construction activities and reduce delays during construction. Update: Here is a short summary of his experiences.

April 2014: Jotte van Ierland, managing director of MpunekoCS visits the Netherlands (all expenses are on his own account). He has informative discussions with Willem Jan Oosterkamp, PUM expert on biogas production in rural areas. He also discusses the progress of MpfunekoCS in detail with the board of IDS.

December 2013: Ekko van Ierland, Board member of IDS Foundation visits MpfunekoCS, in combination with a family visit (all travel and hosting expenses are on his own account). He assists in submitting the progress and financial reports for the organizations that are funding MpfunekoCS.

November 2013: Dekkers joins the Board of IDS. By his presence, the board is complete again.

September 2013: Victor Maxwell starts his three month internship at MpfunekoCS. He will assist with activities such as constructing biogas digesters, organising daily activities for the workers, and developing future implementation strategies for the biogas programme.  Here is a short summary of his experiences.

July 2013: MpfunekoCS is awarded a contract for the realisation of another 90 digesters by The Energy and Environment Partnership (EEP) programme. This expansion of the project is great. However, the rapid growth of the project will put a lot of pressure on the financial situation and human resources of MpfunekoCS.

July 2013: Jotte van Ierland, managing director of MpfunekoCS, visits the Netherlands (all expenses are on his own account). Davey Groothoff leaves the Board of IDS, after over five years of involvement. Many thanks, Davey ! Dirk de Wit joins the Board of IDS. He will act as its treasurer.

April 2013: MpfunekoCS is assigned by the South African Work for Energy program for a project to realise 55 biogasdigesters in Gawula village, which will use cow dung as feedstock.

May 22nd 2012: Jaden van Ierland , son of the managing director of MpfunekoCS, Jotte van Ierland, and Prudence Ndlovu is born in Giyani. Congratulations!

November 2011: Various changes in the Board of IDS: Rijkelt Beumer and Martijn Koster have decided to leave the Board after 5 years of duty , due to their full agendas. Thank you very much! Marjanne van Vliet (later Marjanne Ariesen – van Vliet), joins the Board as its Secretary.

October 2011: MpfunekoCS receives a contract from the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Pretoria for the Education on Sustainable Resource Use for Rural Schools project. MpfunekoCS is going to construct biogas digesters that will be used for educating learners about sustainable resource use. MpfunekoCS will write a booklet on sustainable resource use with biogas as a practical example and organise visits to the biogas digesters for local school classes.

September 2011: SPARK Magazine publishes a full page article on MpfunekoCS, named Turning cow dung into power!

May 2011: The director of MpfunekoCS during a visit to a  primary school in Mapayeni, district of Gawula, assisting pupils to prepare their participation in a regional science contest .

March 9th 2011: A delegation of ICCO will visit Pretoria to discuss then progress of the project and to discuss the next phase  of MpfunekoCS. Mr. Ate Kooistra and Ms. Bulelwa Mshumpela will visit South Africa and on their trip they will meet Jotte van Ierland, managing director of MpfunekoCS in Pretoria.

January 2011: MpfunekoCS is now monthly receiving payments for the biogas. Although the number of famlies paying a monthly fee is still small, it shows the system is basically viable. Currently MpfunekoCS continues to identify families that are willing to pay for the biogas and that can pay at a regular basis .

December 2010: MpfunekoCS has now also tested flexible pipe connections for the digesters. They will repalce the galvanized iron pipes and will reduce erosion. It is also eadier to connect the digesters to the houses.

November  2010: Interest in biogas digesters is South Africa is increasing . MpfunekoCS has now constructed a digester in Pretoria for demonstration purposes. As soon as the license for the digester has been provided by the municipal authorities the digester can be started and will supply biogas tot a family in Pretoria.

September  2010:  MpfunekoCS provides an internship to mr. Soenke Horn from Germany. During the internschip Soenke contributed to further developing the biogas project and he learned about the different phases of the project. You may find  his internship report here.

September  2010:  Article in journal The Sowetan

September  2010:  Article in journal The Star 

August 2010: MpfunekosCS has connected three new families to the biogas digesters. The families are living in a village near Gawula and are very happy with the new form of energy supply. The cooking is now taking place inside on a modern gas stove and the family members are no longer suffering from irritated eyes, due to smoke from wood fire. 

August 2010:  Article in journal Capricorn Voice

Summer 2010: The Dutch Development opganisation ICCO decided to support MpfunekoCS  for the construction of a number of biogas digesters. IDS has been assisting during the phase of applying for the grant and we are very pleased that the joint initiative of MpfunekosCS and IDSfountdation has been successful.

16 September 2009: The biogas activities of Mpfuneko Community Support are news in South Africa. Over the last two weeks there have been reports on Mpfuneko's biogas project in a provincial newspaper (Sowetan), on the radio, and in Morning Live, a national television program.

17 April 2008: IDS has been recognised as a organisation for the public benefit (ANBI-instelling) by the Dutch tax collector. This makes that gifts to IDS are deductable from Dutch income tax (conditions apply, see ‘How to make a donation?’).

22 March 2008: Mr. Martien Würdemann has been appointed as the chairman of IDS. Martien Würdemann has a long experience in the field of thermal waste treatment and energy technology. In his 20 years with Royal Haskoning he acted as a senior consultant, project manager and director for a wide variety of projects.

6 February 2008: IDS Foundation Project of the month

5 January 2008:  IDS starts fund rasing campaign for 2008 IDS signed an agreement with Wilde Ganzen ( to raise funds. Under Dutch income tax regulations, gifts or donations to Wilde Ganzen are tax deductible. Wilde Ganzen will add 50% to the donated amount. In this way your donation will be more effective. Click here for more information.

20 December 2007: Donation HIVOS IDS has signed a contract with HIVOS for the construction of a biogas digester in Giyani. HIVOS is a Dutch NGO that, guided by humanist values, wants to contribute to a free, fair and sustainable world ( HIVOS will contribute €15.000 of the €50.000 needed for the pilot project.

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