Story and Photo by Thabo Ndlovu | Project Field Officer | Heifer Zimbabwe
Jennifer Moyo was born in 1974 in the Makhulela ward of Zimbabwe. Her husband is a resident of neighboring South Africa, where he works to support the family. As a participant of Heifers Hope for the San People project, which began in 2006, Jennifer received five chickens (four hens and a rooster) in 2008 and is now expecting to receive five goats.
Being actively engaged in the Heifer project has encouraged and motivated Jennifer to work for a better life. She works hard to improve her livestock's housing and attends capacity-building programs on animal management and health issues. Despite a limited formal education, Jennifer has been trained and qualified as a Community Animal Health Worker. When women participate in community development at the grassroots level, innovative solutions that address practical problems of livelihoods and basic services are developed, resulting in greater resilience and even more development. And, the story of the role played by women in the successful implementation of project activities is incomplete without mentioning Jennifer.
This project has offered Jennifer benefits such as income through the sale of chickens, as well as knowledge, which is key in addressing day-to-day challenges to sustain her family. While she is able to meet her childrens school fees, the effects of drought have derailed her efforts to acquire livestock beyond chickens, as her resources are diverted to purchasing feed to sustain her chickens. Jennifer is eagerly awaiting her goats, which she plans to breed and market beyond her own community. She sees herself as a major goat producer in the coming years. Unlike some, Jennifer is happy to receive the smaller stock, which is easier and less costly to manage. She has expressed her gratitude to the program, especially the Passing on the Gift® component, which she feels promotes the spirit of sharing and oneness among communities, even outside the Heifer program.
I am very happy now because I dont have to wait for remittances from my husband in South Africa to buy basics and pay the childrens school fees, Jennifer said with satisfaction.