Of the many challenges experienced living in the village of Bushunga, Lodia’s greatest hurdle was preparing for the coming growing season without owning a farming tool. Tools are far and few in between in the village, and every season, Lodia would spend time trying to borrow or rent a garden hoe so she could prepare her small garden. With family and friends not having any spares, most seasons she ended up no further ahead just breaking even after repayments.
Part of RTV’s programs includes a village demonstration plot where villagers to experiment on seeds, trial new farming methods and establish nurseries for communal crops like passion fruits and cabbages. Earlier this year Lodia and other community members formed an agriculture cooperative to help manage their demonstration garden and nurseries, and improved seed distribution. Every household also contributed 20 cents each month to the groups’ savings component. Doesn’t sound like a lot but with the community’s average daily income around 20 cents, it was a big commitment by the village. The groups’ first harvest was a success, feeling confident in their new found skills, the group consisting of 66 households decided the best way to invest their savings and earnings was to purchase enough garden hoes so each participating household could own their own tool. Each hoe costs about $4 dollars at the local market.
Lodia now has her very own garden hoe to use at her small farm. With her brand new hoe to go along with an RTV sheep she received for manure, she n believes she has the potential to build a healthy garden and enjoy her new found independence, however, small her first step may be.
A big shout out to our incredible supporters who believed in Lodia and the village of Bushunga. Proving you right!