“Our life is better now, you can tell from the happiness on our faces,” says Raquel Martínez in front of the poultry barn her community manages in El Santuario, in the Choluteca department of Honduras.
The poultry barn is part of a wider sustainable development project, alongside a community garden, agroforestry plots, water harvesting systems and a rural bank. In total, 81 people are involved in the project, including local activities coordinator Don Concepción, community leader Danilo, María Elena and Pablo from the rural bank, Raquel from the poultry barn and many more.
“Our life is better now, you can tell from the happiness on our faces”
“The best part is how we have worked together to achieve what we now have and to continue moving forward,” adds Raquel. She is one of the 20 women who take turns in looking after the community’s 100 hens.
On average, the hens lay 85 eggs a day. Project members keep some for eating and sell the rest to a nearby shop. Each egg sells for 2.50 lempiras ($0.10) and the earnings go to the rural bank.
Pablo Carranza, treasurer of the rural bank, mentions that they also sell four trays a week to other communities. “The eggs sell really well. They are good and people love them,” he says. The goal is to expand the poultry barn and sell to even more communities.
Raquel notes that the hens she had at home were not well fed and only laid eggs once in a while. Now people in the community eat better because they can take eggs from the barn in case they do not have enough at home.
Eating habits have also changed, explains Raquel. “When we go to the market, we can buy meat, sausages and other things to go with them: plantain, potatoes and vegetables. We don’t eat what we used to anymore.”
Many residents of El Santuario have family gardens where they plant cassava, sweet potato, cucumber, tomatoes and chilies. Since they no longer need to buy as much in the market anymore, they have more money to spend on other important expenses.
Families see the community activities are having a positive impact on their economies and helping them better respond to climate change, says local coordinator Concepción Martínez.
“They are very united, there is solidarity among them and they like to work”
Gustavo Tábora, field monitor of the World Food Programme (WFP) in Choluteca, lists the values that guide this community in its fight against poverty. “They are very united, there is solidarity among them and they like to work”. “They do it with enthusiasm,” says Gustavo, “because they were the ones who created the projects and these are now bearing fruit — food and earnings.”
Thanks to the support of the European Union, WFP works to build the resilience and secure the livelihoods of 900 Honduran families in the Dry Corridor.
This article is part of a series produced by WFP and the social media team of the United Nations.
Learn more more about El Niño Response in the Dry Corridor of Central America (PRO-ACT)