FARMERS in Itezhi-Tezhi say they are grateful to Solidaridad Network Foundation for helping them promote good goat rearing skills in the district.

One of the goat farmers, Mr. Levy Kaingu told the Sun that Solidaridad under the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Global Environmental Facility (GEF) had helped the farmers in the area on how best to keep goats.

Mr Kaingu said apart from goats rearing, the foundation had helped in the promotion of energy saving stove as well as gender inclusion

He said the 500 goats that were given to the farmers in groups as a way to empower them would definitely change their lives.

“We are happy with the efforts being put in place by UNDP under its GEF which is being implemented by Solidaridad, like today they came and taught us about good goat rearing skills,” Mr. Kaingu said

Another farmer Prisca Phiri said the goat project has brought a lot of hope to the villagers because maize had not done well this year.

“What we lack here in Itezhi Tezhi is empowerment so this project will help us raise some income, the 500 goats that have been divided into 21 groups and each group getting 25 goats is a good initiative,” Ms. Phiri said.

Meanwhile the project manager Pamidzai Bota said the goat project, energy saving stoves and the gender inclusion initiatives would help solve some poverty issues and environmental concerns that had been on the rise in Itezhi-Tezhi and Zambia at large.

Ms. Bota said the goats would help farmers reduce the heavy dependency on leaf agriculture and the goat health management would help villagers know more on how to keep the animals.

“We as Solidaridad are implementing the project and we hope that farmers get the best knowledge on these animals so that they may be helped and reduce poverty levels at household level,” Ms. Bota said

She however said that there was still much to be done on gender inclusion as most women were left out on many projects because their husbands felt if they empowered they would not respect their husbands.

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