Income Generating Activities
Upendo Village's income generating activities are crucial for promoting initiative, responsibility and self-sustenance. All these projects are geared towards sustainable development for persons living with HIV and AIDS, most of whom have been languishing in poverty and disease. They are taught and guided and provided with resources for self-sufficiency. Clients learn beadwork, bee keeping, poultry keeping and the care and breeding of dairy animals as well as gardening, tree planting, marketing and use of and care for solar ovens. Upendo Village follows up, troubleshoots, monitors and evaluates progress of the income generating activities. Clients are coached with budgeting and money management in an environment that nurtures values of sharing and caring for each other. There are no similar programs within 50 miles.
Monitoring and evaluation teams are a part of this project. While one staff member has primary responsibility for all Income Generating Activities, the overall implementation team meets regularly with the onsite director, Sister Florence Muia. They coordinate plans and examine effectiveness of implementation. The contacts/representatives of the beneficiaries share their learnings, including description of how they supervise and handle specific issues. They serve on the team that makes regular home visits to assure the well-being of clients and of the animals, to evaluate and to assist as needed. The supervisory grass roots team reports monthly. The management team and the supervisory grassroots team meet quarterly for evaluation.
Specific Income Generating Activities at Upendo Village:
Crafts (jewelry, scarves, and woven bags)
Clients gather twice a week at Upendo Village's family center, where they creatively design and craft beautiful jewelry, beaded scarves and woven baskets. Some of the craft people were bedridden when Upendo Village intervened with nutrition, healthcare counseling, and love. With systematic and consistent support, they survived and are thriving - working with their talents and enjoying a source of income for their immediate and extended families. They are taught budgeting and banking. Eleven now have bank accounts for savings. Forthcoming: testimonials of Rose and Dorcas.
German Alpine Dairy Goats ($150.00 each) are purchased for families (thanks to generosity of donors) to improve family nutrition and income. One goat can give 2 to 3 liters of milk daily for the family and to share or sell. The aim is to provide food for the family and enable them to market milk as well as goat kids for a source of income (micro-business). When the beneficiary's goat kids, the first weaned female is given to Upendo Village, to be given to other families on the waiting list. In a year the goat can kid twice, with two or three offspring each time. By 2009, when the program was only two years old 33 kids had been born and 10 families had given back kids to Upendo Village; benefiting another 10 families.
Families are provided with chickens ($15.00 a pair) and the learn how to raise, and care for chickens to optimize egg production and fertility. Eggs and chicken meat greatly boost nutrition for the families. Sale of eggs and chicks provides ongoing income.
Corn and beans are provided for planting and guidance is given regarding cultivation, harvesting and, possibly marketing crops.