A gift of goats gives hope to drought-hit pastoralists in Mudug

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keddka Ergo

(ERGO) – Some of the pastoralist families worst affected by the recent devastating drought in Somalia’s Mudug region are rebuilding their lives and livelihoods with the gift of some new goats.

The re-stocking programme run by CESVI, an Italian NGO, is distributing a total of 300 goats among 60 impoverished families living in internal displacement camps in Elgule and Wisil villages.

Each family gets five goats that they are expected to move out of the camps to raise.

Istahil Elmi Kheyre, a mother of 10 staying in Wisil, lost 200 goats to the drought two years ago.

She told Radio Ergo that frequent drought had left her on the edge of despair, struggling to bring her children up with very little resources.

“Before the drought hit our area, I had 200 goats which were my livelihood source but they died in the severe drought that struck our village two years ago,” she said.

She received five goats to restart her former livelihood.

“I resettled a few kilometres from Wisilvillage to rear these goats which I was given by CESVI on 17th of this month. This is a good start and I hope soon I will be stable,” said Istahil, appearing happy.

Istahil noted that she was still receiving food aid distribution from the camp.

“Though the goats are few, they are still very important for our life because they are the starting point for us to regain what we had before. With the help of food aid, we can now stay in our village and keep these goats,” she explained.

Deqo Hassan Farah left her village with her children to stay in a camp at El-Gula after the family lost their entire herd of 100 goats in the drought.

“Pastoralism is our mainstay. My life is now gradually returning to normal. I have five goats that I am rearing outside the camp,” said Farah.

Ahmed Dahir Ali, a CESVI official, said pastoralist households were now gradually regaining their livelihoods.

A World Bank report in August 2017 estimated that Somalia lost up to $1.2 billion in livestock and crops in the drought.

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