Caritas has developed the living standards of people in Gokwe through the projects it introduced which include Boer Goat farming as well as bush layer chickens, this publication can reveal.
Caritas is a development arm of Catholic Church and it always conduct a need assessment for communities before intervention and the communities are then addressed on the programs to be implemented.
“On the need assessment we conducted we realised that the Nemangwe community has got small goats in terms of Carcas when slaughtered. It ranges from 7- 10 kilograms and with breed improvement they now get +30 kilograms on F1 generation. For income generation purposes, breed improvement will improve income and this is good for vulnerable communities so that they can generate income,” said Edward Dube from Caritas.
Dube further stated that the project will go a long way in sustaining the lives of the Nemangwe community.
“The major issue was to provide nutrition to the community with quality food and access to four star diet. This was imperative with the goat project enabling the community to access different food groups where one can sell the F1 goat at $USD100 and buy food and also pay school fees and medical bills”, he further explained.
Godfrey Ndlela a Boer Goat farmer from Nemangwe who is one of the beneficiaries of Caritas project spoke highly on the importance of such projects in the community.
“The Boer Goat farming has many advantages, they have good quality of meat, and they mix well with other goats so that they grow fast.
“For the Boer project to be successful, the goats must have a wide space for grazing, they must drink clean water preferably borehole water and they need supplementary feeding especially in winter,” he said.
According to Dube the Boer Goat farmers received education on expect technical support, linkage to service providers and market trainings on livestock production, management and disease control.
Before the training some Boer goat farmers did not understand the idea of breed improvement, and they used to avoid bucks moving around as free range to mate with others, but they later understood the importance of the project. Dube said some members did not want to castrate the non-boer bucks but they have since learnt that breed improvement is good for the community.
Caritas has also introduced other projects that includes building Blair toilets for people, and also the bush layer chicken project which were given to groups in Svisvi community.