In my community, commercial livestock farming was seen as an activity for people who owned large acreages of land. Because the community is residential, most people live on small plots of land where such projects cannot be easily undertaken.
With the knowledge and skills, I gained as part of my school orientation at Egerton University in Kenya, I decided to utilize the small space left at home to start my poultry farm. I opted to get indigenous and exotic breeds of chicken for meat and eggs.
To kick start the project, I acquired 50 hens. There was a delay in getting the order delivered because of the high demand for chicks from suppliers during the lockdown. I hope to expand this number to over 1,000 hens per input. Since this is also one of a kind of enterprise in the community, my desire is to create awareness about it, the advantages of having a poultry, while at the same time encouraging community households to start their own projects.
The major challenge I face at the moment is getting feeds for the birds, since they are confined indoors. For example, I feed them on concentrates mixed with maize brand. I also combine the meal with some cooked food such as rice. This has significantly cut the cost of feeds.
The other challenge is getting the veterinary services needed on time in order to vaccinate the hens against any diseases. Sometimes, the veterinary officers are unavailable, and this has an impact on the birds’ health and overall growth.
The current stock is one and half-months old, and will be sold off after a period of four months. This has all been possible because of the financial support from the MasterCard Foundation through RUFORUM.
By Salima Tusaba Nanyanzi