Base Titanium takes stock of its Poultry programme in Kwale
By Vera Shawiza / Published October 13, 2017 | 6:12 am
Base Titanium is in the process of implementing a poultry programme is set to positively impact livelihoods in Kwale County.
The programme aims to improve food security and nutrition plus improve livelihoods by providing an income source.
The programme, which began with 25 beneficiaries in 2015 and has now grown to over 350 with 80 percent being women. A further 200 participants will be included in the programme over the coming year.
Base’s poultry programme relates closely to Sustainable Development Goal (“SDG”) number two which aims to end hunger, achieve food security and improve nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture.
Mr Pius Kassim the Community Relations Manager at Base, believes the company helping Kwale County achieve this SDG objective.
“Base has been implementing various programmes which focus on improving livelihoods through agriculture. We now have Kwale farmers growing cotton, sorghum, potatoes, poultry, vegetables and various legumes among others,” said Mr Kassim.
The livelihood programme leans towards cash-crops in order to meet the objective of improved standards of living which is attained through farmers selling their produce at competitive market prices to earn an income. The farmers can then use the income from this venture to supplement their subsistence crops as well as meeting other household needs such as school fees and medical care.
To add a degree of sustainability to the programmes Base, its partners and the community cooperatives formed by the farmers have entered into agreements with East African Breweries which enables farmers to directly sell their sorghum and Cotton On, Australia’s largest value fashion company which directly purchases cotton lint from the farmers.
Asia Swaleh a farmer from Fihoni village was among the first adopters in the poultry programme. Asia was given five chickens to start a poultry business in 2015. She also received training from Base on how to best care for her chickens. Today, her venture has grown to over 1,200 chickens that now form a major part of her livelihood. “I use the income I get from my poultry business to pay for my children’s school fees and also pay off debts that my other business ventures have accrued,” she said.
Asia notes that the poultry business has improved her family’s quality of life over the past two years as she moved her children to a private school and she is in the process of completing construction of a permanent house in her compound.
Pius Kassim added that the company through its livelihood programme, aims to empower the community with a better quality of life that will outlive the life of the Kwale Mine.
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