Here we depend on cultivation. But these gardens are not very productive. So I wanted to get an alternative means to earn money to support my family. I started with a few local hives. Then I heard about one training that was about bee keeping. When I attended that training, I realized I could actually do bee keeping to get money. I also realized the small piece of land I have could be more productive for bee keeping than cultivation. As you can see the place is a bit rocky. So, that motivated me to go into bee keeping. And indeed I have realized money from sale of honey and that has given me the interest to continue.

The Life as Beekeeper

Who belongs to your family / who is living with you?

Anguyo Simon is my name. I am an orphan myself, but now married. So, in my home we are 6 in total. Me, my wife, 3 of my children and my elderly mother.

How has beekeeping changed your life?

… bee keeping has changed my life a bit. At least every year, I get some money from selling honey. That has helped me in a number of ways. These chicken you see here, those few goats you see over there..…these are some of the things I have got from bee keeping. Even sometimes I pay school fees out of that. So, I am hoping that it will grow and help me to support my family.

How do you provide a good environment for your bees?

This area has two streams on the southern and northern sides, so, it is like some kind of island…So, my bees have water source, especially during dry season. As you can see, there are many types of trees around this place. So I protect them by ensuring they are not cut down. Well, there is not much bush fire here, so the trees are fairly safe.

What do trees mean to you and how can they be protected?

Now I know that trees mean a lot, not only to me, but everybody. For me, they are important because of my bee keeping work. They provide shade, they also provide food for the bees, we get firewood from these ones around here. That’s why I value them, Even further down that side, I have planted mangoes and these give us fruits. So, trees are really important.

What is the most important thing in your life?

The most important thing in my life is the work I do, that is cultivation, because this is what I depend on. It also now includes this be keeping. Meaning that since I don’t have any other way of earning, I have to take this work serious because it is the thing supporting my family.

What are your biggest challenges and how do you plan to overcome them?

………hmmm… challenges?…for as long as you are a man and still living, ….and with a family…there will be challenges. For example, if children get sick etc., and you don’t have money, then you will have serious challenges. These can cause death in the family. So, these are some of the challenges we face as a man….by all means we have challenges… So, how to overcome them is …like now here you have use some of your money to get things like these small animals which you can utilize during challenging times, in the home, in the clan etc.

What do you like to do in your free time?

In the afternoons I go and stay out with friends. That is sometimes where you get ideas and information. For example, this information about bee keeping, I got it when I was out there staying with friends. If I did not stay with friends, I would not have got information about educating farmers to learnt about good bee keeping practices. So, if I am not sick, I go out and spend time with friends. When it is time, you come back home.

Which place would you like to see once?

Since I have not gone far in education, I really don’t think about going to see a place. But maybe through people like you and our beekeeping work, maybe you can take us to go and see places where they do beekeeping on large scale etc. Otherwise, for me I think I will stay here.

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