Development Work Foundation Theo Kiewiet Cow project Kenya 2003

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The parish Caritas of the St Clemens church of Ameland has for the work of the Foundation Development Work Theo Kiewiet brought forward a donation for the cow-project in Kenya.
Also the Primary Leeuwerikschool in Uden has given a donation for one cow.

In the sub-location Munganga in West Kenya are eight families being assisted to build up a small livestock. All families get a special cross breed cow, which has a high production of milk than the local type of cows. The families get a special guidance from the project-leader Enos Sikoyo Matangwe and veterinarian workers. For the cows there will be grown a special type of grass with high nutrition on the land of the families.

The guidance of veterinarian workers is to keep the animals healthy and for rearing race calves. The people are used to keeping cows and have sufficient land. With the special breed cows people can produce more milk for a more balanced diet and it can protect the children against malnutrition. Through trade of milk extra income can be generated, as well as the trade of cattle. The project area is a fertile land a few hundreds of kilometers from Lake Victoria. Meanwhile long droughts do exists. During these droughts cattle can bring a structural improvement in combination with crop growing.

Next to that families are less dependent on their jobs in the sugarcane fields, so they are more self reliant. The families will be more motivated to build up their own livestock and to help themselves forward. The partly unused land will be used more efficient.
Kenya is a country which gets his income for 70% from agriculture. The same it is in the project village Bulechia situated in the hills north from Lake Victoria. Agriculture is therefore the best source of investment for a productive development in the life of the local people. This could be done through helping poor families by purchasing a cow for them.

For the poor family this can mean:
1. improvement against malnutrition
2. own employment
3. encouragement for a positive change in life
4. cultivation of unused land
5. a positive look at agricultural education
6. financial problems can be solved through trade of milk.
7. the general health of the family will improve

The cow-project provides eight cross breed cows for eight poor families in the sub-location Munganga. The first cow was a crossing between an Ayrshire cow and an African local race cow. The family has planted a special type of protein rich grass, which is sero grazing for the cow. The long type of grass is cut by the hand to fed the cow.

The crossbreed cow is about 20.000 Shilling, 85 shilling is about one euro. The milk-production of the cow will be about 10 liter daily. The price of a liter is 20 shilling, per week this may bring in 1400 Shilling, mot counting own use. By 40% own use, this means 3400 shilling per month per family. In this way life can be improved substantial for a family.

The people will be employed by the care for the cattle, looking for the market for their products, milk and meat. Out of the profits the people can reach a higher degree of self- sufficiency and that is what it is meant for. In the beginning the cows will be guided through project-leader Enos Matangwe and veterinarian specialists, by exchanging as much as possible knowledge with the cow owners.

At last the project should provide sufficient independence of the cow owners so that they can work for their own fully. The local people have reasonable knowledge of cattle-keeping and there are more veterinarian specialist in the area. When there is a decease, the specialist know how to handle. There are baths against ticks and injections can be given if needed. Many successful cattle keepers are in the area and people can learn from each other.

There are still born calves from the first 8 cows which are donated by the Caritas from Ameland and the primary school in Uden. The second female calf will be presented to another poor family. So help one the other. One family’s cow died unfortunately, this family can be compensated through one of the new generation cows, or from a new donation.


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