At 46-years-old, Nyanut is, for the first time in her life, self-sufficient and independent, and her newfound financial freedom is helping her to change destructive social norms.
All of this is thanks to JAM’s Food Security and Livelihoods Programme, which aims to:
- Improve food security in vulnerable communities
- Uplift women by providing stable incomes
- Improve nutritional outcomes
- Empowerment and restoration of dignity
As the oldest wife of her husband, who has another five younger wives and as mother to nine children, Nyanut shoulders the responsibility of feeding her children alone.
Nyanut with three of her children at the entrance to their homestead.
“In our culture, the husband often supports the younger wives.” Says Nyanut.
Because of the number of children she supports and the vulnerable position she is in, Nyanut was identified by the JAM Food Security and Livelihoods team as a prime candidate to participate in a programme called BRASE II. This programme offers community members a variety of livelihoods support and education options.
Nyanut and 50 others in her community chose vegetable farming as their Livelihoods project.
“I have often seen people selling vegetables in the market and wished that I could be one of them.” Says Nyanut, “Their ability to feed their family and make some extra money was an exciting idea.” She says
BRASE II supports vulnerable households with food while teaching them how to farm so that they are able to provide for their family in the future. This education and support includes seeds, treadle pumps for water-lifting, skills training and on the job assistance and trouble-shooting.
Nyanut and the other women who were chosen to participate in the livelihood project discussing the harvest with a JAM field staff member.
Nyanut has excelled at vegetable farming, dedicating herself to meticulously caring for the vegetable plants and rejoicing in the resulting harvest.
Not only is Nyanut now able to feed her family, but she has also been able to sell the extra vegetables, providing additional income for her family.
The reason this additional income is so important is because Nyanut has started participating in a community savings project which will help to safeguard her from crisis such as flooding. She is also able to support her daughters for longer, which means that they will not end up in a child marriage- a common occurrence in poverty-stricken families.
“My hope for my daughters, is that they will be able to learn how to farm vegetables from me, giving them independence in the future too.” Says Nyanut.
We think women like Nyanut are the future, don’t you agree?
Donate towards our Food Security & Livelihood programming here.