The young man who changed the life of his family

       Gubalafto woreda  (1)

Walelign Biru is a resident of Gubalafto woreda 023 Wudmen Kebele, North Wollo Zone. He is 27 years old and never married. He lost his biological father at the age of 16, and he received the responsibility of raising and educating his younger sister and brothers. As a result, he dropped out of 9th grade and engaged in agriculture. But the family had no resources so it was difficult to start a business. Their lives were hand-to-mouth and miserable.

ORDA Ethiopia’s livelihoods for Resilience project (L4R) has been working in Amhara region 7 woredas (Woldia cluster (Raya Kobo, Habru & Guba Lafto); 2 woredas of Meket cluster (Meket and Wadila woreads ); and 2 woredas of Mehalmeda cluster (Menze Mama Midir & Menze Gera Midir) to benefit 36,000 rural households (HHs) and to graduate with resilience from the productive safety net program. Waleligns’s family was not self-sufficient in food, so they were targeted by the project and it is a reason for the improvement of the family's life.

       Gubalafto woreda  (2)

As soon as the project started, he became a member of the village economic and social savings and received training on money management and utilization and cattle fattening. Therefore, 3 years ago, he borrowed 15,000 birr from financial institutions and fattened 2 oxen. During the year, he increased his capital to 50,000 birr. In the 2nd year, he borrowed 30,000 Birr and fattened oxen. From the income he earned from fattening, he tears down their grass and mud house and converts it into a tin house. In the 3rd year, he borrowed 40,000 Birr and got better income by fattening oxen. At that time, he bought a plot of land in Mito town for 30,000 birr (the plot now has maps and plans and is sold for 350,000 birr). He is currently fattening 2 oxen, and he has an American breed of cow.

"Now, my total capital has increased from loan 30,000 birr to net capital 800,000 birr. I am satisfied with this change because of the support given to me by the project, especially the training given to me on fattening. Previously, I tried to fatten an ox without having received any training, and because I fed it too much fodder at one time, one of an ox was died.

“Generally, the training on animal fattening helped me very much. I know when to sell a fattened ox in a good price. Most of fatteners sell their ox in holidays, and it is a time to buy an ox for fattening in a cheap price. So I buy fattening ox during the holidays because it is cheaper during the holidays. What I sell is because I have created a market linkage with famous butchers like Woldiya. So, I sell them at a better price."

Walelign plans to expand his ox fattening business to fatten more oxen in different rounds. He said he would like to have a place to rent and use a cashless loan.

Over the past 6 years, 36,186 (female: 11,119) families have been organized in Village Economic and Social Savings and saved $1.22 million through the project. Also, 27,544 (female: 10,530) families participated in selected value chains; 33,452 families (female: 15,153) got additional source of income by engaging in off-jobs.

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