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A Young Mother Aims to Make Change

Nadia Eslayeh weeding her land with her mother-in-law

Nadia Eslayeh, a nineteen year old mother lives in the Qua’ Al Gurain area, east of the city of Khan Younis. She lives with her daughter, husband, and his family of six other members. They have no furniture in their home, only some blankets, mattresses, and simple kitchen tools. None of the family members have full-time jobs, and so they do not have a steady source of income. Nadia's husband Ahmad works intermittently with very low income that doesn't exceed 70 NIS per month.

Nadia’s life changed for the better after she was selected to participate in the USAID-funded GUARD project, which was implemented by CHF International under the Civic Engagement Program administered by ARD Inc. Nadia received training on organic farming, and the inputs to create a home garden on her small plot of land. She was able to cultivate her land using the organic agriculture methods that she had learned, which provided the family with many types of fresh food that they were able to use in their home. Based on her ongoing efforts to improve the food security of her household, Nadia has recently been selected to receive additional inputs and training that will allow her to expand her household production to include poultry, which will provide the household with additional fresh food in the form of eggs and meat.

“If I get poultry production kit, I will be very happy and that will increase our fresh food supply and support us to save some money [that we can use] for our daughter’s needs. I will buy her clothes, milk, and many other things. And who knows? Maybe in the future I will be able to have my own home,” said Nadia with a smile.

Nadia is enthusiastic to receive a poultry production kit. She is planning to care for it as much as she can to make sure that she’s able to sustain her production, aiming to increase her production through adding to her flock over time. She explained, “The more care I give to chicken the more benefit I get. My family will help me to raise the chickens, and we will benefit from eggs, chicks, and meat.

We plan to eat part of the eggs and let some hatch in order to increase the flock size. For the long term, I am sure that the income we get from the poultry farm and the garden will get me out of this poor [standard of] living.”