A Sustainable Source of Income for Women Living with HIV/AIDS and Orphans in Nanyuki- Poultry Keeping Project

Africa Rural Connect is an online platform on which amongst other topics generates ideas for Home Grown School Feeding.

It unites a wide network of African Diaspora, current and returned Peace Corps volunteers, rural African farmers, academics, international development practitioners, and professionals from 139 countries who together contribute to the online platform to create business plans and ideas for Agriculture in Africa.

The proposal below is taken from the platform from a submission titled, "A Sustainable Source of Income for Women Living with HIV/AIDS and Orphans in Nanyuki- Poultry Keeping Project", looking at the contribution to poverty reduction through improved health and food production, and security among households of women living with HIV/AIDS and orphans in the Nanyuki Township.

Background Information

Kenya like most of the sub-Saharan countries is greatly affected by the pandemic of HIV and AIDS. most of the urban centres have a high prevalence rates indicating that almost every family is affected. Nanyuki is one of such urban centres. Located in the Laikipia East district, Rift valley province, it is among the major tourist destination since is located on the leeward side of Mt Kenya, and along the equator. There are several military force base in Nanyuki.  These features have result to the town being highly populated and mainly a commercial town.

The climatic condition is semi-arid there little agricultural practices take place. Most of the population live around Nanyuki town and mainly in the two slums Majengo and Likii slums which are locate within the vicinity of the town. Due to the large population a large proportion of the population is unemployed leading to a large number of idlers. This has in turn lead to growing numbers of youth who engage in risky behaviours such as drug abuse, crime and prostitution. These can explain the high HIV/AIDS prevalence rates.

The consequences include the ever increasing number of households lead by women after their husbands have died from HIV/AIDS and more orphans being left behind by their departed parents.

Due to the low income and poor economic status most women continue to engage in risky behaviours which expose them to chances of reinfection. Most of the child led family suffer financial crisis forcing the elder siblings to seek employment to be in a position to support the younger ones. Due to their lack of a god education the opt to get involved in such activities as early marriages for the girls or prostitutions leading to teenage pregnancies and infections with HIV/AIDS.

My idea is to put up a project that would create a sustainable source of income for such families. This would reduce their indulgence in such risky behaviour.

The overall goal of the project

The project focus mainly on contributing to poverty reduction, improved health and food production and security among households of women living with HIV/AIDS and orphans in the Nanyuki Township.

Objectives of the project

The project will purpose to:

  • create a source of sustainable source of income for the targeted households and improved livelihood of the target group.
  • improve access to education of the orphans who are most of the time neglected in the society.
  • improve food security of the targeted household and hence improved health.
  • empower the women living with HIV/AIDS through seminars and education forums held by the group meant to equip them with essential living skill.
  • ensure proper project management and sustainability


  • Less idle time since the group members are to look after the chicken in shifts following a schedule which they will participate in making.
  • a sustainable source of income from the sale of the products such as eggs, chicken meat to the local hotels and restaurants and to local grillers.
  • Improved food security for their families since every member will be receiving a tray of eggs from the project every two weeks and the net profit will be shared among the household.
  • The orphans will get a chance to access and complete education therefore putting them in a better position to secure better employment and a bright future. This would be possible since the returns from the projects would be used to pay for their school fees .this would be in line with UNESCO goal of achieving education for all.
  • It will serve as a social group where people meet and share their experiences and problems therefore reducing their psychological burden. A problem shared is a problem half solved.
  • Re-educate the chances of those already infected to be re infected and cases of new infections.
  • This project would also increase the productivity of a group rather discriminated in the society therefore serving as an example that should be emulated by others.
  • This project is sustainable since chicken keeping involves simple activities which are easy to learn and therefore can be done by the group members with minimal support from a poultry veterinary.
  • There requirements are also locally available since they can be purchased from the local market. The availability of a large readily available market increases its feasibility.
  • The money from the ARC contest would be used to purchase the building materials and the chicks. Some will be used for paying the initial school fees of the orphans before the project can start generating income.
  • Later the income earned from the sale of the products from the project would be deposited in the groups bank account and used to give monthly wage to the group members while each orphan is allocated some money that would go to paying their school fees.


  • Piece of land-which is readily available
  • wiremesh,wood and ironsheet to make the shelter
  • labour-to be provided by the group members
  • a day old chicks(200 to start with)
  • Chicken feeds-commercial or locally available eg leftovers from the members homes.
  • Processes to engage in when setting up the project
  • Identification of the target group-women living with HIV and orphans -the starting group size would be 150 women with HIV/AIDS and 150 orphans.
  • Mobilization of the group
  • Procure the supply of the building materials,the aday old chicks and the feeds
  • Training them on how to take care of the chicks


  • Target group identified
  • Mobilization of the group
  • The shed is constrcted by the group with minimum support of a professional
  • After the chicks have been introduced it would take upto thre months to start seeing the products of the project.
Read the original article from Africa Rural Connect

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