SUNBIZ

Resilience Drives Serea Farmer Saimoni Nabitunimavu

When Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston devastated 4,000 yaqona plants that were 3 to 4 years old, from Saimoni Nabitunimavu’s plantation in 2016, the Serea, Naitasiri farmer, although disappointed, remained optimistic
30 Nov 2020 10:22
Resilience Drives Serea Farmer Saimoni Nabitunimavu
Serea, Naitasiri farmer Mr. Saimoni Nabitunimavu at his piggery farm in Naitasiri.

When Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston devastated 4,000 yaqona plants that were 3 to 4 years old, from Saimoni Nabitunimavu’s plantation in 2016, the Serea, Naitasiri farmer, although disappointed, remained optimistic that things would fall back in to place.

Not only did the cyclone damage one of his family’s sources of daily livelihood, the father of four also suffered damage to his two-bedroom corrugated iron home.

Things changed for the better when his application for financial assistance towards his proposed income generating project with the Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management’s Self-Help Programme returned successful.

The 60-year-old farmer now owns a piggery farm in addition to his root crops, vegetables, fruits and bee farming ventures which extends on a 50-acre land.

Since the construction of the piggery shed more than two years ago, Mr Nabitunimavu has managed to grow his piggery from a few piglets to more than 40 pigs at a point in time. From this, he’s earned more than $5,000 from the sale of pigs to commercial abattoir alone apart from regular sales to neighboring communities.

From the money he earned through his piggery farm, Mr Nabitunimavu was able to rebuild his home and also provide for his family.

“I had filled the form and also attended a training before my application came out successful,” he told a Monitoring and Evaluation team from the Ministry and team members from the United Nations Development Programme’s Governance for Resilience project team that visited his farm earlier this week.

“I started my piggery farm and saw there was a market there that could help improve the living standard of my family. I have sold more than 20 pigs to the abattoir and I had also ventured into the barter system where I was able to barter pigs in exchange for yaqona plants, which is now more than 1 years old.”

“This piggery farm has helped us a lot personally and financially. This has helped my family a lot and also some nearby community members who had come to ask me for employment to earn money to support their families.”

“I thank Government for this assistance. My family and I help out in looking after our piggery farm. This farm has relieved some burdens off our shoulders financially in some way.”

A highlight of the visit to Mr. Nabitunimavu’s piggery project was his display of resilience despite being impacted severely by TC Winston.

Key to this was his ability to identify and mitigate risks that he felt could impact his piggery project as well as the potential risks of his piggery project to the community.

To protect his piggery shed from these potential risks such as landslides, Mr Nabitunimavu planted trees on the slope situated above his piggery farm. To ensure that the stench from the farm did not affect nearby communities, Mr. Nabitunimavu chose a good location and also ensured that water flowed well to clean the shed every day.

To safeguard his new yaqona farm, Mr. Nabitunimavu planted beneath trees to protect it from severe weather and strong winds that could potentially destroy it, if it was exposed.

To further develop his business, Mr Nabitunimavu intends to start producing biogas from his piggery farm and also cart a road that would ensure safer access to his farm as well to increase his piggery yield.

The Ministry through the support of the UNDP Governance for Resilience Project is learning from examples of resilience displayed by Mr. Nabitunimavu to strengthen its processes to better integrate risk and protect the sustainability and impact of its Self-Help Programme

 

Feeback: rusiate.baleilevuka@govnet.gov.fj



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