Goat raising project increases income
Although far from being the goats in the old tale “Three Billy Goats Gruff,” the goats employed as part of a recent goat raising project in Nepal have helped produced almost fairytale-like results for the families involved.
Designed to provide income to Nepalese families in greatest need — specifically, landless, woman-headed households, the Dalits (a low ethnic and disadvantaged caste) and freed Kamaiyas (bonded laborers) — the project is making remarkable achievements in the provision of goats, goat-raising training and Village Animal Health Worker training in the Banke and Bardiye districts of Nepal.
As of June 2007, 1,012 goats had been distributed, 363 families had been trained in goat raising, 39 individuals had been trained as VAHWs, and six VAWHs had opened agro-vet shops to deliver quality services to their clients.
How's the project work?
Using a Revolving Scheme approach, beneficiaries organized into groups of 10; all received goat-raising training, but only five received goats. To ensure everyone eventually receives livestock, recipients this year have to contribute one kid (young goat) for every one received back to the Project Management Committees (composed of community members) which then distribute the offspring to families without goats.
Mr. Shiv Narayan Rana Tharu, Project Manager for the Freed Kamaiya Empowerment Project, elaborates: “We have developed a system whereby goats are replicated within the community on a chain basis such that all the families will have goats within the next few years, as the member receiving a goat contributes an offspring kid to a fellow group member. I have felt that community ownership has increased as well as participation in the process, including contributing to buying the stocks and taking good care of them.”
Goat rearing was the community members’ project of choice because it was identified as one of the more lucrative cost-per-input projects given the socio-economic conditions of the target families. Members decided not only what project they would proceed with, but also how they would move forward the project (e.g. training), who would participate in the training, how the goats would be distributed, and how the offspring would be collected and allocated among non-recipient members.
By December 2008, the project is targeted to benefit 800 families. The additional income earned from raising goats is expected to lead to an improved quality of life for participating families, enabling them to better afford education, nutritional food, quality health care, etc.
Learn more about Plan's work in Nepal.
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