Diversified small livestock farming provides sustenance for farmer

Diversified small livestock farming provides sustenance for farmer

Christine Chamhazhika (51) a mother of two and small-scale farmer from Chimanimani district. Christine is working with PELUM Zimbabwe member, Participatory Organic Research Extension and Training (PORET) Trust. She says she has been able to start livestock production which is enabling her to take care of her family. Photo: Collins Chirinda/PELUM Zimbabwe.

Christine Chamhazhika (51), a small-scale farmer from Mutestawanda village in Chimanimani district has turned her life around through venturing into small livestock production.

Christine, whose village lies in a semi-arid region of Chimanimani district says she used to struggle to make a living until she ventured in small livestock farming in 2021. Christine says although she keeps other small livestock, she focused particularly on duck production with the aim of raising money to take care of her family’s financial needs.

She says the project has been successful not only in raising money for the family but also in supplementing their diet.

I started this duck project with only two ducks and at one time I had over 60 ducks which I sold to take care of my family. Currently I have 28 ducks in my fowl run which I am planning on selling,” says Christine.

Sometimes I consume the ducks as a source of protein for my family,” she adds.

Christines says she got into small livestock farming after receiving training on small livestock production, water harvesting and holistic land and livestock management through PELUM Zimbabwe member, Participatory Organic Research Extension Training (PORET).  She says although she is implementing the other agroecology concepts she learned, livestock production was the thing that drew her interest the most.

PORET came in to train us on small livestock production and water harvesting. I decided to venture into small livestock production,” says Christine.

Chitenderano Mutyadzanga (45), a Project Officer at PORET says training farmers on small livestock production is one of the initiatives that PORET has been undertaking in Chimanimani district with the goal of enhancing resilience of farmers.

“We have been training and capacitating farmers in communities surrounding Chaseyama in order to help them adapt better to the shocks of climate change particularly in our areas which are drought prone. Farmers like Christine have been better equipped to practice small livestock production under this initiative,“ says Chitenderano.

Clever Mukove (54), Business Development Manager for Knowledge Transfer Africa (KTA) says farmers in drought prone areas have to diversify their agricultural activities to incorporate livestock production as a form of income generation.

Farmers should diversify their agriculture and increase focus on economic viability and sustainability of their projects. They also need to tap into cooperative work and market linkages which makes marketing their livestock easier,” he says.

With the confidence of her success with duck production, Christine says she now plans on expanding into piggery and cattle rearing. Christine believes one day she will grow her livestock production into a big business enterprise.


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