By Lesley De Dios, Community Manager
Geoffrey Mwaniki resides in Nairobi with his wife Edith and son Nathanael. An accomplished farmer, Geoffrey mixes passion with practicality and grows tomatoes, capsicums, and mangoes and sells his fruit inventory to customers in Nairobi. Climate conditions in his area are favorable to his crops and his customers reap the benefits of his sweet fruit. In addition to farming, Geoffrey raises poultry, cattle, and goats. With proceeds from his farming, Geoffrey was able to construct a house for his 200 plus indigenous birds and increase his goat stock over 300%!
However, Geoffrey isn’t always experiencing rapid growth in his business. Last March, due to a poor drinking system, he lost more than 300 chickens when an outbreak of Fowl Typhoid broke out. When an epidemic like this occurs, business for the farmers, who typically rely on daily income versus a fixed salary, can be devastating; their livestock decreases substantially which in turn leads to fewer sales and less profits. It is important that farmers keep their products and livestock well maintained and taken care of in order to keep their business afloat.
With his current loan of US $393, Geoffrey will be able to fix a new drinking system in place, which will prevent outbreaks like Fowl Typhoid from occurring. This system will reduce water contamination and insure Geoffrey’s chickens remain healthy and well hydrated – meaning he can continue to profit from the sale of their eggs and further increase his inventory. Due to Geoffrey’s resourcefulness, the pipes and posts to support the new water system are already in place to minimize the loan amount. Once the new drinking system is in place, Geoffrey will eliminate the time consuming task of adding water by hand, thus enabling him to focus on sales and expanding business.
As a successful second-time Zidisha borrower, Geoffrey is motivated and enthused more than ever to further increase his family’s income. He currently has a 100% on-time repayment rate, using his first Zidisha loan to clear the balance of an incubator, which helped him increase the stock of his poultry and sell that supply to the market.
It’s not often that one finds pleasure in one’s work, so when you can couple your livelihood with what you love – capitalize on it like Geoffrey, “I started farming because I have a passion for it and I realized I can make money from doing what I love,” and the rest will follow.
Geoffrey Mwaniki recently raised a $393 loan to install a modern drinking system for his poultry farm. You may learn more at his Zidisha profile page.