Heifer Village Presentation: Grasscutters and Urban Poverty in Ghana

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (February 7, 2013) – Arkansans can learn about Heifer International’s one-of-a-kind project in Ghana with animals called “grasscutters” at a presentation at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 20. Roland Kanlisi, Heifer Ghana country director, will share Heifer International’s work to domesticate this rodent, whose meat is highly sought-after, to boost incomes among poor urban residents.

Grasscutters, also known as marsh cane rats, have been hunted and consumed for years in Ghana. The species is hardy, but hunters often use poisonous traps or set bush fires to catch them. Heifer International’s grasscutter domestication project has given families living near the city of Accra the opportunity for steadier incomes.

Much of the urban population in Ghana experiences high poverty and hunger, exacerbated by the inward migration of youth from rural areas. Grasscutter production gives urban dwellers a chance to diversify their income because, unlike vegetable, goat and sheep production, it can be undertaken on very small plots of land.

When: 6-7 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013

Where: Heifer Village (Global Impact Room)
1 World Avenue
Little Rock, AR 72201

RSVP: This event is free to the public, but a reservation is requested by calling 501-907-2697.

Roland Kanlisi joined Heifer Ghana in 2001. Previously, he worked with the Ministry of Food and Agriculture of Ghana for six years, where his responsibilities included oversight of the performance of the National Out-grower Scheme of The World Bank-funded National Livestock Services Project. Kanlisi holds a master’s degree in Animal Science from the Moscow Agriculture Academy, and another master’s degree in Veterinary Epidemiology from the University of Reading, UK.

About Heifer International:
Heifer International’s mission is to end hunger and poverty while caring for the Earth. Since 1944, Heifer International has provided livestock and environmentally sound agricultural training to improve the lives of those who struggle daily for reliable sources of food and income. Heifer is currently working in more than 40 countries, including the United States, to help families and communities become more self-reliant. For more information, visit www.heifer.org, read our blog, follow us on Facebook or Twitter, or call (800) 696-1918.