$22,500 needed of $100,000
Mennonite Central Committee (MCC)
In a marginalized context where 58% of the population is dependent on food aid and 12% of children exhibit moderate to severe malnutrition, this program helps families become food self-sufficient through animal raising projects. Women are also being trained in management of small-scale projects, marketing, and financial skills while promoting the use of organic waste as fertilizer. The local partner continues to have success with its programming, but also finds more people in the area in need of training. The effective work plan and the continued need has encouraged the program to continue into its fourth, three-year work plan which began April 1, 2017.
Rabbits Replace Desperation with Hope
When Nehal was notified that her family was given priority to receive rabbits and training, her stress-related health conditions started to subside. She had been at her wits’ end trying feed and manage all the daily struggles experienced by her family of seven without a source of income. With instruction on animal husbandry and small business management, she soon had enough rabbits for food, and more to sell to take care of household expenses. And her children, whose school attendance and grades had suffered, are now better able to focus on their studies.
Despite deteriorating living conditions and the lack of employment opportunities in Gaza, 100% of the families involved in the rabbit program have managed to add variety to their meals and increase their weekly intake of protein. This in a context in which at least 92% of the population must resort to such coping strategies as reducing portion sizes or number of meals, eating market leftovers or purchasing food on credit. According to latest data provided by the Socio-Economic and Food Security Survey, 47% of the population across the Gaza Strip are either moderately or severely food insecure and struggling to meet food needs. Local partner Al Najd identifies families experiencing the greatest need and offers instruction and support.
Sabren, too, is pleased and grateful to begin the process of breeding rabbits to improve her children’s diet and earn money. She lives with her family of eight in an overcrowded apartment, and her husband is unemployed. She’s thrilled with the fast progress she’s made in learning basic rabbit care and feeding, and is already able to include this rich protein source in weekly meals. As she completes training in small business management she’ll be able to sell some to relieve the tight financial situation they’ve been living in. For Sabren, the biggest reward is the smiles on her children’s faces.
Caption: Sabren’s rabbit operation
Palestine Gaza Program
Led by Mennonite Central Committee and local partner Al Najd
12 communities, 255 households, 1,785 individuals