Ojoo Thamin’s life has recently taken a turn for the better thanks to a “super chicken” introduced by World Renew.
Ojoo lives in Armumukeng, a village in the Nebbi region of Uganda.
In this community, the majority of families make their living as small-scale farmers. Some also raise cattle and goats to supplement their income. While people might have a handful of chickens for their own consumption, chicken farming has never been considered a viable income-generating activity.
World Renew and its local partner, the Church of Uganda (COU) Nebbi Diocese, have been working with farmers to help them think about chickens in a new way.
They’ve explained how manure can be used as a fertilizer to improve crops and that there is a ready market for eggs and chicken meat in nearby communities.
They have also taught men and women how to properly feed, vaccinate, and care for their flocks.
Next came the “super chicken.” World Renew and COU are introducing Ugandan farmers to a new, hybrid breed of chicken called a kroiler.
Kroilers are considered dual-purpose chickens because they lay eggs but also provide good meat to eat, and they do so in large quantities.
Kroilers lay an average of 150 eggs per year, as opposed to traditional chickens that lay only 40. The birds grow to be 5 to 7 pounds, twice the size of traditional Ugandan chickens. In addition, kroilers can live on a diet of kitchen waste and are resistant to many local diseases.
Ojoo attended all the trainings about chicken farming; in March 2014 he received a few chickens to get started. By July, he had 32 birds and hoped to increase that number to 120 by the end of the year.
He says that he is proud to have learned new skills in building chicken coops, vaccinating birds, and caring for them. He plans to sell some of his chickens to pay school fees for his children and to improve his family’s diet.