Women Fighting Poverty through Agribusiness, part 1.

Gundua Foundation

Last time we gave you an update on how the older students are benefitting from the Hand-in-Hand program, and they are not the only ones gaining knowledge from the ongoing entrepreneurship education. Here is the first of two interviews with women who are participating in group training about agribusiness, starting with Purity Kamotho:

Purity Kamotho and her husband used to depend on a small shop at the entrance of their homestead, crops of their half-acre piece of land and milk sold from one indigenous cow. The crops would fail when the rain was too little and the cow is now old, hardly producing enough milk for their own consumption. When Purity heard about the Gundua Foundation entrepreneurship program, she joined hands with her neighbors to form a group known as Muguna Muroone in June 2018.

And the knowledge that the program has given Purity is already paying off! She has learnt a lot about saving and investment.

“I used to be an impulsive buyer and would spend my money on useless things that were hardly important. But now, I have opened a bank account and started saving whatever little money I get”.

Purity Kamotho feeding some of her chicken at her homestead which she bought with table banking loan.

She has also made a few changes to her small shop to better serve the needs of her neighbours, inspired by the group’s training on how to improve business and add value.

“I have started buying vegetables such as sukuma wiki (kales) and cabbage from other farmers. I wash, cut and sell them in small packages. It has proved to be popular with my neighbours who are tired at the end of the day and they find the vegetables very convenient because they are ready for cooking. I looked for an opportunity and I saw one. I told my husband I will give it a try and now I have happy customers”.

While visiting her neighbours, she also noticed that many of them hardly kept chickens, despite the demand for eggs in her community being very high. Seeing a business opportunity, she borrowed money from her group, which is already doing table banking.

“I bought six chickens and one cock. One of the chickens was already laying eggs and has since hatched chicks. I want to increase my number of chickens so that I can sells eggs at my shop. I can also sell some chickens around Christmas time when the demand and prices are high,” she says.

She adds, “I share what we learn in the group with my husband and he is happy that our livelihood is gradually improving. He is also thinking of selling off the cow and one bull so that he can get a high yielding dairy cow”.