In my last post about this program, I told you about my visit with the women in May. Two months after I left news of new additions to the program reached me.
In the last update the women were grappling with the impact of avian flu on the egg market and rather than sell the eggs for very little money, the women decided to keep the eggs and figure out how to hatch them.
The women have let all their hens go free range, in turn this fooled the hens into seating on their eggs.
The results have been amazing. This has meant new additions to the original number of chicks we gave the women and the start of scaling up of these micro chicken farms.
The best performer so far is Christine. She had three cocks that she sold and bought a couple of goats. This will enable her to take part in our goat cross breeding program and therefore enable her to access goat milk as part of her diet.
Christine stopped selling her eggs as she was only getting £1.90 per tray of 30 eggs. She has started selling tow month old chicks at £2.15 and she earned £17.20 from the sale of 8 chicks.
Christine had zero income at the start of the program and lived off the land and as such £17.20 is a a fortune. This is equivalent to what a teacher would earn at a local school would earn in two months.
Jadress Kabiga has new additions to her micro farm too. I was surprised to learn that she has 16 one month old chicks from the eggs of two hens.
Jadress’ chickens and some of the new additions.
This is Sylvia who we told you about earlier in the year. She is still collecting eggs as well as
hatching. She has 5 three week old chicks that she will sell at two months. Two months is the age at which a chick is deemed able to adapt to a new environment.
This was a new program for us, and we are very pleased with the impact it is having on women’s livelihoods. We are grateful to our friends and supporters who have made this possible,
If you are a regular here, you will recall that following the success of the first micro poultry program called Send a Chicken to African womanwe launched a second program in December of last year.
This second program has been a challenge in ways that we never expected. The first challenge was to do with very heavy rain that meant that the women found it hard to keep the chicks warm. The second challenge was avian flu.
As a result of these challenges, some of the chicks died leaving the women with roughly 8 chicks out of 15 and the price of eggs fell as nearby countries stopped buying eggs from Uganda.
Notwithstanding those challenges, the women have now started selling the eggs from the project and on average they are earning £1.66 per tray. In Uganda a tray of eggs is made up of 30 eggs and the women are collecting unto 8 eggs a day. We would ordinarily expect a tray of eggs to sell at £2.60 but for the problems mentioned above.
But we still have some good news.
For instance Dezranta Nyakato, a 59 year old woman is currently earning £3.32 a week from selling eggs. She used to earn 51p a week prior to joining this initiative.
Our initial aim for her, was to increase her income to £1.75 a week as it is the income a woman in her village needs to send three kids to school per term and feed her family. This has exceeded our expectations and for that we are truly grateful for your support.
I caught up withe women at the end of May and most reported that they were very happy to have eggs to sell as they had no income prior to taking part in this program and also as part of their diet. Whilst here in the West we are discouraged from eating too many eggs, in villages such as Rwentojo, an egg as part of one’s diet is a real luxury.
The next steps are an experiment to see if the women can hatch chicks from this breed of chickens. This is because this is not ordinarily possible without an incubator but it is apparently achievable if the hens go from a semi intensive program to a full free range feeding program. Some amongst the women already have their hens on a full free range program whilst some don’t.