Beekeeping Brings Livelihoods to Women in Bamiyan Province

February 24, 2011

Afghan_Beekeepers-142x300 Located in central Afghanistan, residents of Bamiyan Province largely rely on agriculture and animal husbandry to earn a living. It is, however, a meager living as most families have limited land and few animals. Outside of farming, there are few economic opportunities in the province and many households live in dire poverty.

“My family wanted to leave Afghanistan and move to Iran due to the poor economic situation and lack of employment, but now that we have a source of income, we don’t need to leave our country,” said one of the 100 women who participated in a beekeeping training offered by the USAID-funded Community Based Stabilization Grants (CBSG) project. CBSG project is a unique initiative that aims to reduce poverty and improve food security and overall stability in the areas in which it operates. In Bamiyan Province, CBSG recently implemented a women’s beekeeping project in coordination with the provincial Rural Rehabilitation and Development Department; the Department of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock; and local women’s shuras (councils).

The beekeeping project provided local women with the opportunity to learn a sustainable agricultural skill and earn an income to support their families. The local women’s shura selected 100 participants, who learned beekeeping skills and how to market the honey they produced.

At the end of the training, the graduating women received two beehives each. Now, the women are equipped with the tools and skills to provide for their families. In the past, these women had no source of income and were dependent on male family members.

A participant in the training said, “As a result of this project, I am now running my own beekeeping business and now I have a source of income to support my family.”

With marketable skills and agricultural knowledge, women are improving stability in Afghanistan and for their own families.

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