200 women trained in chicken rearing

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Pamela Shumba Se­nior Re­porter

ABOUT 200 women in Nkayi, Mata­bele­land North were yes­ter­day trained on how to rear broiler chick­ens as part of the First Lady Dr Grace Mu­gabe’s na­tion­wide poul­try train­ing pro­gramme that is meant to em­power Zanu-PF Women’s League mem­bers.

Dr Mu­gabe em­barked on the pro­gramme this year, with each prov­ince ben­e­fit­ing from a do­na­tion of 3 000 broiler chicks to kick-start small-scale poul­try busi­nesses.

The pro­gramme is be­ing run un­der the theme: “Em­pow­er­ing women for in­creased par­tic­i­pa­tion in the econ­omy.”

Nkayi North Mem­ber of Par­lia­ment Cde Sithem­biso Ny­oni said the pro­gramme was an op­por­tu­nity for women to make money and take care of their fam­i­lies.

“This is part of the First Lady’s ef­forts to em­power women. Irvine’s is train­ing them on how to rear the chick­ens while my min­istry is train­ing them how to run their busi­nesses and make prof­its. “We have trained women in Nkayi South and to­mor­row we pro­ceed to Nkayi North,” said Cde Ny­oni.

Mata­bele­land North Women’s League pro­vin­cial chair­per­son Cde Mede­line Bhebhe said through the chicken project, Dr Mu­gabe was re­spond­ing to lack of op­por­tu­ni­ties among women, which has seen them be­ing highly de­pen­dent on men.

She said the train­ing pro­gramme is meant to em­power women with skills to rear the chick­ens be­fore Dr Mu­gabe do­nates the sec­ond batch of chick­ens.

“The train­ing is be­ing fa­cil­i­tated by of­fi­cials from Irvine’s Chick­ens. Un­for­tu­nately of­fi­cials from Irvine’s couldn’t make it to­day but we have women who have been trained al­ready who spent the whole day train­ing oth­ers.

“Most of the chicks that were given to the women ear­lier, died be­fore reach­ing ma­tu­rity. The First Lady has there­fore de­cided to pro­vide an op­por­tu­nity to ed­u­cate them on how to nur­ture them. Our prov­ince got 1 000 chicks from the first do­na­tion and most of them died. We’re ex­pect­ing 3 000 soon from the First Lady and I’m cer­tain that af­ter th­ese train­ings the poul­try projects will bear fruit,” said Cde Bhebhe.

Cde Bhebhe said Dr Mu­gabe launched the pro­gramme af­ter re­al­is­ing that women were lag­ging be­hind when it comes to ed­u­ca­tion and em­pow­er­ment pro­grammes.

“The First Lady be­lieves this is a se­ri­ous dis­ad­van­tage for women as most of them are de­pen­dent on their male coun­ter­parts for sus­tain­abil­ity,” said Cde Bhebhe.

She said it was the First Lady’s hope that women would form groups in the chicken rearing pro­gramme.

She added that the em­pow­er­ment of women can help tackle some so­cial ills such as child mar­riages and pros­ti­tu­tion.

An­other group of women will be trained in Gwe­lut­shena in Nkayi to­day. — @pame­lashumba1

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