Building resilience to reduce disaster risks through improved livestock management
The combination of a sluggish economy, drought and animal disease outbreaks push many struggling farming families to a breaking point, as they must sell their herds to afford food. To expedite recovery, Land O’Lakes International Development helped to improve livestock production, management and marketing for vulnerable communities.
Through the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), ZRR focused on disaster risk reduction and restoring farmers’ livestock asset base in areas throughout Manicaland and Matabeleland South. With technical support, goat producer groups are now able to improve breeds, prevent disease, boost fodder production and enhance storage techniques to preserve fodder for the dry season. Working in conjunction with the Africa Centre for Holistic Management (ACHM), ZRR trained community livestock workers and farmers in improved rangeland management practices, and developed community grazing management plans. Land O’Lakes also developed a network of 68 community livestock workers, and linked them to private sector input service providers and licensed veterinarians. Farmer adoption of improved husbandry practices along with increased access to animal health services in target areas contributed to an overall decrease in goat mortality rates from 45% at baseline to 14.8% at the end of the project.
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