She decided, along with some other people, to start a project raising indigenous free-range chickens. Her first step was to invest in building a good fowl run to ensure her chickens would be well protected. In May 2015 she began with six chickens which, due to the improved care, quickly increased to 133 free-range chickens a year later.
“I sold 112 chickens in Esigodini and made over $600. I was selling the smaller birds for $5 and the bigger ones for $8.” Mrs Masilela was impressed that she managed to raise a substantial amount of money which she then used to purchase household groceries and a sewing machine.
“This was a great moment in my life as the chickens managed to revive my dream. I was previously into sewing but became broke and could not raise the money to purchase materials for my trade.”
Mrs Masilela plans to use the electric sewing machine to start a project sewing school uniforms. She is still continuing with the chicken project and she currently has more than 25 chickens. “One thing I learnt from CCMP is that sometimes when we are thinking of starting an income-generating project, we think we need to have start capital and because we are never able to raise the start capital we never start.
“CCMP taught me that you start with what you have and grow from there. This has inspired a lot of women, and I have given some of them a hen each so they could be encouraged to start.
“As the wife of the chairman of the pastors’ fraternity in Irisvale, I have a huge role to be a good example to other women in the community, and to minister beyond words and through actions as well. Through these projects I hope to do exactly that.”
For more information: Footsteps 95 is focused on poultry keeping and is packed with practical ideas and tips for healthy chicken breeding
Mkhululi Sihlola is a pastor and CCM facilitator. He is based in Bulawayo and linked to the Evangelical Fellowship of Zimbabwe (EFZ).