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The hilly area around JOY Youth Training Centre

Masaka project

History

Masaka is home to JOY Youth Training Centre, from which the JOY Goat Development Programme grew. The current goat breeding project has grown out of a collaboration with Vi Agroforestry (now Vi-SCC). Within a 50 km radius of Masaka Town, we have selected the 12 areas where take-up of the dairy goats has been most enthusiastic, and in each area we have set up a cluster of between 3 and 10 active villages. This includes Bukulula and Kyamulibwa where they are breeding the 75% bucks that we supply to other regions. Unlike our other projects, the Masaka breeders groups are coordinated directly by the Goat Development Programme, without the mediation of a partner organisation.

Opportunities

• Builds on the existing Vi-JOY project

• Other organisations such as World Vision, Send-a-Cow, Heifer International and Caritas have also introduced dairy goats, and thereby helped to popularise them.

• The intervention of Vi in this hilly district means that there is already an understanding of integrating fodder supply with environmental protection.

• Local government in Masaka District have been keen on improving goat productivity within the district


Challenges

• A large number of Boer goats have been introduced into the district, which in many cases has distracted farmers and led to confused breeding goals,

• Because Masaka has become known throughout Uganda as a source of breeding stock, this has diverted farmers from seeing goats as production animals, and thereby inhibited the selection process

• The introduction of dairy and Boer goats has been done with scant record keeping, so in many places the blood levels of the current goats are uncertain.

• Vi transferred the focus of their operations from Masaka to other districts before the Goat Development Programme was launched, so some fledging breeders groups floundered in the meantime.

Proximity to the ‘cattle corridor’ has led to some cultural aversion to goats milk.

Teaching at Nkalwe VIllage, Kagganda sub-project, Masaka, Uganda