Lima Akhter (30), a mother of two- Jannati (9) and Khusi (3) fell into a deep crisis when her husband, Md. Khaleque became paralysed due to a spinal cord injury nearly seven years ago. They spent over five hundred thousand Taka for his treatment, but all went in vain. Having no other income opportunities, Lima started working as a housemaid but faced difficult times earning three meals a day and bearing the household expenses.
Lima’s family had no experience with duckling rearing or managing small-scale farms. But the lady from Gaibandha’s Padumshahar union took the risk of taking multiple loans from the PPEPP-EU project and now has a sustained income.
After receiving the training and 20 ducks from the project, it all started for her, and so far, she has earned around 50,000 Taka by selling Ducks. Now, she has 150 ducks waiting to be sold soon in the local market. She has bought a cow and calf and plans to increase these numbers. She says, ‘Now people lend us money because they know that if we sell two ducks right now, we can instantly repay them.’
Lima’s physically challenged husband played a crucial role by establishing linkage with the local market actors. This connection helped them access a smooth market system to buy ducklings and sell ducks from their home. Thus, they have brought the market home, leading to hassle-free dealings and transactions.
Subsequently, Lima received tailoring training and a sewing machine under the project and now earns 1000 to 1200 Taka per month by making clothes at home. She cultivates potatoes, corn, pumpkin and seasonal vegetables in a piece of five-decimal abandoned land in front of her house, primarily for family consumption, but also earns a little by selling the surplus in the neighbourhood.
Liima says that in the past, most of her day laborer income (100 to 150 Taka per day) was spent on buying oil, salt, and spices. But now, fish and rice are taken as a meal to Madrasa almost daily by her elder daughter.
The PPEPP-EU provides appropriate technical assistance, continuous household-level guidance, and consistent support by the project’s technical staff to help start a profitable income-generating activity and make it sustainable for the family. The project staff also motivates the participants to scale up and diversify their productive assets for better economic growth.