Archive for the Poultry Category

Making a Difference at Home in Walo

“Before we started working with CREATE! it was very difficult to find vegetables in the village because it is so small and there is no market, but now thanks to CREATE! we are able to eat vegetables every day.”-Aminata Diack

“I’m passionate about this project and I decided to join the CREATE! team because there were no jobs in the village, and women used to stay in their houses without anything to do,” says Aminata Diack, age 28, Walo.

In small villages like Walo, it is not unusual for young adults to leave and go to the city to make their living. This is partly due to the impacts of climate change: drought and variable weather patterns make it difficult for people to do agricultural work in their home villages in desert conditions, so they are forced to look elsewhere for employment. Those who stay behind to take care of the households are left with very limited opportunities. However, Aminata has seen this change with the help of CREATE! in her community. Living in a household of 10 people, including her husband, co-wife, and children, she has participated in all of CREATE!’s programs over the last 2 years, including crop cultivation, building improved cookstoves, tree planting, and poultry production.

“The improved cookstove is helping me to save my time because I don’t need to walk many miles for collecting firewood,” she says. The implementation of improved cookstoves, combined with the tree planting campaign, has also reduced deforestation around the village.

Additionally, Aminata has found that the VSLA (Voluntary Savings and Lending Association) program has made it possible for community members to save and manage their money, as well as provide loans for those who need them. She enjoys raising her own poultry through the poultry production program, as well as gardening fresh vegetables to feed her family. All of these projects together have made it so that fewer people are leaving Walo, and instead making their living through improving their own home community, which Aminata observes has made life better for the village.

Cooperative member Aminata puts compost around the newly transplanted green pepper. This time of year it is very hot in Walo, which is why it is extra important to take care of the tiny plants.

Taking the Initiative in Fass Koffe

The community garden in Fass Koffe has grown large enough that they needed to find a better way to get water to the farthest plots.

Since graduating from CREATE!’s program in March 2016, community members of Fass Koffe have kept up the momentum that they gained from five years of working closely with CREATE!. Using the skills they’ve gained in self-development and social mobilization, they continue to expand and sustain their gardens and income-generating activities. Recently, they took it a step further in exemplifying the level of self-sufficiency that CREATE! strives to empower in its partner communities, by taking the initiative to improve the watering system for their community garden.

Khady Kebe has been president of the Fass Koffe cooperative since its very beginning, and continues to promote CREATE!’s philosophy of self-development.

While they had more than enough water to meet their needs, thanks to their hand dug well and solar powered pump, they weren’t getting enough water pressure to pipe it all the way to the farthest blocks of crops in their garden.  “We know that without water, we can’t do anything,” said Khady Kebe, president of the cooperative, “so we decided to elevate the platform to see if it would improve the water pressure problem.” Khady has been the cooperative president since its very beginning, and dedicated the philosophy that CREATE! promotes to encourage participatory action in peoples’ own communities.

As one of CREATE!’s first partner communities, Fass Koffe now has well-established gardens that produce vegetables they can eat, and sell on the market to save up for things like improvements to their water reservoir.

Under Khady’s leadership, they got a quote of 250,000 CFA (about $450 USD) for the masonry, materials, and plumbing that they would need to raise the platform from their reservoir. This would provide a stronger gravity feed to take more water from the reservoir to the farthest basins in the garden. The community cooperative evaluated their finances saved up from the sale of their own vegetables and poultry at the market. It turned out, they had enough to fund the project all on their own and were proud to do so without assistance from CREATE!.

The freshly completed elevated platform has greatly improved the amount of water that can be drawn from the reservoir.

“Since the elevation of the platform, we have noticed an improvement of the water at the site,” said Khady Kebe, describing the increased water pressure that now enables them to more quickly and thoroughly irrigate all their crops.  The project was a success, thanks to the leadership of Khady Kebe and the teamwork of the community cooperative. Together, community members of Fass Koffe have shown what great things can be accomplished using the philosophy and approach that CREATE! strives to achieve with its partner communities.

Fresh Vegetables Improving Health

Fatou Khoulé says she began participating in CREATE! programs because “it was the first time for me to work in my own village.”

 

Fatou Khoulé remembers a time not so long ago when vegetables were nonexistent in her village of Darou Diadji. Living in a household of 15 people, having fresh vegetables now makes all the difference for her, her husband, her children, and her daughters-in-law. At the age of 60, Fatou Khoulé has found a noticeable difference in her health and the health of others in the village since they began farming vegetables and gained access to clean water thanks to the solar pump that CREATE! installed in the community.

Members of the village take part in cultivating the vegetables and trees that support their families.

 

Before CREATE! began working in Darou Diadji, the village was hot and windy because so few trees were growing there. Today, however, Fatou Khoulé reports that it has more green spaces and an improved climate, which contributes to better cultivating conditions for their vegetables. Fatou Khoulé has been very involved in all of CREATE!’s projects in Darou Diadji, including the tree planting campaign, vegetable cultivation, building improved cookstoves, and poultry production.

Having been a part of the program for two years now, Fatou Khoulé especially likes the poultry project, remarking that she can now eat chicken whenever she wants, along with her vegetables. She notes that the emphasis on building self-sufficiency, skills, and knowledge is what sets CREATE! apart from other NGOs. “CREATE! has given us skills and knowledge we can use forever,” she says.

Creating a Market for Poultry

Thriving chickens

In recent months, the Ouarkhokh poultry cooperative sold about 80 percent of their chickens to families in their village, and the remaining 20 percent to people in other communities.

 

In the CREATE! partner community of Ouarkhokh, there are now 12 households that have their own poultry sheds. Seven of these are owned by CREATE! cooperative members, who learned how to raise poultry through CREATE! training and shared this knowledge with their neighbors. Even with all of this chicken available, demand (and prices) for poultry remain high in Ouarkhokh and surrounding villages. Some young men have even returned from the city to earn a living by raising and selling chickens in Ouarkhokh.

Using the skills that she learned from CREATE! field technicians, Mere Awa Top, 45, has built her own poultry shed at her home. In addition to the income that she earns through her participation in the cooperative poultry project, she is also selling her own chickens for extra income. She says, “My children now frequently eat chicken and I earn a lot of money.”

 

 

Mere Top in garden

Mere Awa Top says, “CREATE! has helped me earn money and save it in our community Voluntary Savings and Lending Association (VSLA).

 

Each morning, Mere Top gets up early to complete her housework before working in Ouarkhokh’s cooperative garden site. In the afternoons, she sells vegetables in the village’s market. Mere Top says that she decided to participate in CREATE! training programs because they offered an opportunity for her to learn how to meet her needs and have an occupation. She also believes that participating in CREATE! training programs has brought the women of Ouarkhokh together. She says, “We used to stay at home but now we gather everyday to work together in the garden site.”

Mere Top thinks that CREATE! programs have increased Ouarkhokh’s self-sufficiency, She says, “Before CREATE!, women in our community traveled to Dahra or Linguere (each between 10 and 15 miles away) to purchase vegetables. Now that we have a garden in Ouarkhokh, we no longer need to depend on other communities. Many people know about our project here and they now come here to buy chickens and vegetables.”

 

 

 
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