Of Determined to Develop’s revolving goat loan programs, the Sangilo group is the oldest. The group began in 2014 with 20 women. The project provides vulnerable women with two female goats which they rear, and pass on the offspring to a new cycle of women, with the aim of contributing to economic stability and social empowerment. Any offspring thereafter are kept by the women and can be used for income, savings and insurance for the members of their families. There is also a nutritional benefit for families, who can consume the goat’s milk, and the manure can be used to grow crops. In this blog we spotlight a women who was part of the first cycle of Sangilo beneficiaries and is now the owner of 18 goats.
My name is Maggie Soko, l am 48 years old and l come from Sangilo sub district of Karonga in Malawi. I am a mother of five children, two boys and three girls. I became a member of Sangilo goat group on 5 august 2014. The chief recommended that I be part of the group because he could see how much our family struggled to meet our basic needs. When l heard this good news l was very excited to be part of a revolving goat fund because it is one way that l can help to end the challenges I face. This has been a great thing in my life.
At first l received two goats from Determined to Develop which gave birth to twins. I passed on the two goats to another member of the group and the two I remained with continued to give birth. To this day, I have reared 18 goats. I am the member who has produced the most offspring in the group because my animals only give birth to twins each time! It makes me very proud. I have sold 7 goats which has enabled me to provide the basic needs for my children and buy iron sheets, timbers and bricks so that I can start to build my own house. Now I have some big plans for the future.
Some of my relatives are helping me to take care of another 5 goats, while I look after the other 6. Two are almost about to give birth. It’s not easy to keep 18 goats in one place because they need attention, time and frequent feeding. Sometimes strange diseases attack them and I have to search for a veterinary officer to treat the goats.
I am very thankful to Determined to Develop for the support because I have benefited a lot from the program. If I compare it with the past, it seems like my life has changed. I have started gathering materials to build my own house, I want to buy a mattress next and I will save money for school fees. Good things are coming for me!