Tuesday January 28, 2020

For many people around the world, rearing animals such as chickens and goats is a means to earn a living and say “no” to poverty. Families living in Kenya, for example, are no exception.

Kenya boasts the largest economy in eastern and central Africa. However,  a staggering 11% of the population are unemployed. Overall, around 1 in 3 people are living on less than £1.40 a day, subhanAllah.

Rearing poultry (amongst other things) can offer a way out of poverty. Yet without the right tools, knowledge, and means of investment, this can be both a challenging and unsuccessful way to earn a living.

livelihoods-in-Kenya
In Kenya, rearing animals such as goats and chickens can offer a crucial income and a way out of poverty

This was sadly exactly the case for 34-year-old father of two, Omar from Kenya. Working as part of the Umoja Poultry Group, Omar and the group’s 15 other members were suffering huge losses and struggling to earn a living.

Islamic Relief: Supporting sustainable solutions to poverty

Operating with a ‘Merry-Go-Round’ system, members were contributing less than £1 monthly to the Group. Whilst £1 may seem like a small amount for us close to home – less than the price of a morning espresso in fact – raising the minimum contribution was often difficult for Omar. What’s more, such little investment was also too low to have any meaningful impact on the group’s lives. This is where Islamic Relief stepped in to support Omar and the Umoja Poultry Group to create a stable, sustainable livelihood for themselves and their families, alhamdulillah!

We introduced the group members to GSLA savings, as well as training on good agronomical practices and poultry keeping. We also provided quality seeds for farming and 50 chicks for each member.

With this support, Omar was able to plant the seeds in his ¼ acre farm. After three months of tilling and weeding, he could sell his produce to neighbours and nearby grocery shops in the town of Mariakani. This revolutionised his work, yielding fantastic results in both poultry rearing and farming.

livelihoods-in-Kenya
Omar, a member of the Umoja poultry group, feeding seeds to chicks

Not only did all his chickens survive, but the earning he made from the kitchen garden and chickens also enabled him to start saving some of his income. Making £180 in profit from his kitchen garden, Omar can contribute to the Umoja Poultry Group as well as save extra money.

Aiming to build his business even further, Omar has since also borrowed £40 against his savings to start up his own dairy business. This is all thanks to the support provided by Islamic Relief:

I am so grateful to Islamic Relief for supporting me and giving me the opportunity to increase my income and develop myself for a sustainable livelihood. My family is also grateful to access fresh vegetables for more nutritious meals.

We’re delighted that Omar has been able to develop a secure, sustainable livelihood to support himself and his loved ones. The whole family can now look forward to a more prosperous future insha’Allah.

It’s eggcelent to see how something as small as seeds and start-up training can wield such eggciting results! Alhamdulillah!

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