Butcher in the backyard

Wildlife poaching for meat has declined over the past five years on the slopes of the Nyangani Mountain Range, thanks to the Global Environment Facility small grants programme called “Butcher in the backyard”.

This involves donating livestock to local households, which in turn pass on the offspring to others, providing beneficiaries with meat and a source of income.

In partnership with the Zimbabwe National Environmental Trust and a community-based organisation, Chitsanza Development Association, GEF launched the first phase of the scheme in 2007.

“The objective is to help reduce wild life poaching and assist disadvantaged community members to develop. Most households have achieved this,” said Ashlove Mutasa, ZIMNET Projects Manager.

The project has seen goats, pigs and chickens being distributed to more than 150 families in Mambemba, Bonde, Nyatondo, Bore and Sedze villages in Wards 19 and 22.

“The beneficiaries, who were identified by their local leadership, received two female goats, pigs and two chickens each,” said Mutasa. They then passed on an equal number of livestock to the next beneficiary.

Robson Nyatondo (54), a retired soldier, is one of the initial beneficiaries who now has 15 goats, eight pigs, and 20 chickens with seven turkeys.

Said Nyatondo: “I had no livestock at my homestead having been working in the capital city for many years. But now I am a proud owner of several goats, pigs and chickens. My sincere gratitude goes to GEF/SGP, ZIMNET and CHIDA.”

Just like his neighbours, he has a flourishing nutrition garden that produces adequate vegetables for his family and for sale to traders and locals. Eighty gardens have been established. From the goats he gets milk for household consumption.

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