A goat isn’t just for Christmas, because this gift makes a lifelong impact on vulnerable families. That’s something that’s hard to ‘bleat’.
Living in a refugee camp in Gambella, Ethiopia was incredibly difficult for 35-year-old Nyabiel Nyang. Like many of the almost 400,000 South Sudanese refugees who live in seven camps in the region, Nyabiel struggled to find reliable work and enough food for her and her children.
But with the arrival of three goats, her situation began to improve. As part of Concern’s livelihoods programme, Nyabiel received training on how to build and grow a kitchen garden, and seeds and tools to get her started. She was also given advice on how to care for her livestock.
The addition of manure from the goats provided the extra boost needed for her vegetable garden to flourish with home-grown tomatoes, sweet potatoes, mangos and cabbages. The goat manure also helps to fertilise Nyabiel’s drought-resistant moringa tree, the leaves and seeds of which are a good source of protein and vitamins.
Today, Nyabiel harvests enough fruit and vegetables to feed the whole family ensuring they remain healthy and nourished. And what they don’t use, they can sell at the local market. Some of the income from this also enables Nyabiel to send her four-year-old son Chiny and his siblings to school.
And it doesn’t end there. Nyabiel can breed kids to be sold at market to help more families. While nourishing goat’s milk will help supply Chiny and his family with vital protein. That really isn’t ‘baaa-d’ at all.