Self-help group concept, A weapon of poverty

Livingston Magazine 28, is a hardworking youth from Ngundu village in ward 10 Shurugwi district who has escaped the hard grips of poverty through his broiler production enterprise

Livingston realised the benefit associated with Hand in Hand Zimbabwe´s socio-economic upliftment interventions when he joined the Motivated and Entrepreneurial Youth project in April 2021. Shortly after completing a module on opportunity identification and enterprise planning, he started a poultry enterprise (broiler production).

After completing his O’ level in 2014, he struggled to get decent employment as he did not perform well in his academics. He survived on menial jobs, and could hardly meet his life needs. The situation worsened when he got married to his wife Rosemary Kawawiso a couple of years ago. It’s like he became a burden to his parents who were also unemployed. “Things were tough that I could hardly feed my family, I reached a point where I regretted marrying,” said Livingstone.

The Self Help Group concept (SHG) has emerged as a new ray of hope in ameliorating the living condition for Livingston when he Joined Pick and go star club in April 2021. The self-help group concept helped him acquire the desired capabilities and funding. From the group fund savings, he got a loan to start his poultry enterprise.

It is through participating in Hand in Hand Zimbabwe trainings that he gained entrepreneurial skills, motivation and desire to take up income-generating activities for sustainable livelihood. With technical skills training in poultry production, he has improved on poultry management practices and looks forward to increase numbers per batch. Currently, he is keeping 50 broilers per batch.

It is true that the poor status in villages can be transformed with the help of self-help groups. SHGs are the real pathfinders in the life of rural youth,” he said.

Through his testimonies, his wife and mother also joined the pick and go self-help group,

His monthly net income is around USD$150 and is now able to sustain his family needs and demands in terms of food, clothing and sanitary wares. His income has actually increased by around 15% from what he was getting before joining the star club

Livingston appreciated the efforts made by Hand in Hand Zimbabwe in helping the vulnerable communities, citing that, if it was possible the programme be extended to all rural and peri-urban communities in Zimbabwe. Thus eradicating poverty through job creation and creating socio-economically resilient communities.

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