Maternity room / Creep feeding area
'SPECIAL'- 2020 ACTIVITY AND FINANCIAL REPORT
Written and submitted by -
Atomba Tegwi Titus
NOWEPFA COOP- BOD - Cameroon
P O Box 729 - Bamenda
2. ACTIVITIES CARRIED OUT WITH THE SUPPORT FUND FROM ABROAD
3. WHY THIS REPORT IS CONSIDERED SPECIAL
4. THE USE OF GOD GIVEN NATURAAL TALENTS FOR DEVELOPMENT WORK
5. FINANCIAL STATEMENT
6. SOME MAJOR CHALLENGES OF THE COOPERATIVE
7. NEXT PRIORITY PROJECTS OF MOBILE LIVESTOCK AND THE COOPERATIVE
8. GENERAL OBSERVATIONS AND CONCLUSION
This first quarter of the year 2020 has got its peculiar challenges both on the local and on the international scene.
In Cameroon, we have the ongoing sociopolitical crisis that has been going on now for close to 4 years
in which the two English speaking regions of Cameroon have fully engaged in an armed struggle for the restoration of their state-hood/independence which as they claim, was confiscated by French Cameroon in 1961.
On the global scene, the COVID-19 pandemic is doing its worst by rendering many people jobless as the advice of staying at home has become the predominant precautionary phenomena and thousands have been reported dead all over the world. Social distancing, frequent washing of hands and the use of hand sanitizers and the wearing of face mask have become the new fashion/way of life in many countries today.
In the middle of these two serious crises we still need to help each other and do everything possible to survive. It must be remarked here that in difficult time like this, financial support from friends and partners abroad, no matter how much, its yielding a lot of impact in the lives of the beneficiaries. In a war situation like the one we have here in Cameroon, succeeding in any economic activity will depend largely on your geographical location within the town in which you find yourself. This is because sometimes separatist fighters have confrontations with the government military within the urban circles to the extent that civilian are killed due to stray bullets.
The pig farmers cooperative and the Mobile Livestock piggery farm are situated on a hill side somewhere on the Bamenda urban town periphery, from where you can have a view of the town center from far and can listen to gun firing during confrontations. With the absence of the majority members of the cooperative as a result of the above mentioned challenges, we are still able to sustain the vision of the cooperative with the collective efforts of the few available members.
Designing and artistic work on the cooperative sign post.
Repair work on the Mobile livestock piggery/construction of new feeders and drinkers.
Composition of feed for the piggery.
Digging of water bore-hole below the piggery.
Support to Christian youth fellowship musical album production.
Support to phase two of the church building project.
Designing and artistic work on the cooperative sign post:
As mentioned in our last report, the assignment of contracting an artist to write our sign post on both sides was yet to be accomplished so we contacted one good artist who has finally delivered the job as you see in the photo below. We will be raising it along the road side as soon as possible on a very special day when a good number of members will be present.
The old wooden board / The new iron board
Repair work on the Mobile livestock piggery/construction of new feeders and drinkers:
The infrastructure of Mobile livestock piggery which doubles as the cooperative's demonstration farm during trainings is quite old enough to the extent that some of its woods is rotten and needed to be replaced meanwhile some feeders and drinkers needed total replacement. An additional maternity room was needed such that two sows can deliver at the same time.
What is special or peculiar for this room is the small separation for piglet heating and creep feeding from 3 weeks of age. This separation also protects the young ones from being crushed by the sow during their early stage of development. We used cement blocks, sand and a rich mixture of cement with concrete.
A feeder, drinker and creep feeding area made for a second maternity room
Composition of feed for the piggery:
The two pigs that were bought for the 'piglet bank project' and mentioned in our last report of September and November 2019 donation have all been crossed, so we are expecting their first delivery in July 2020. In this light we composed some bags of feed to sustain them together with the rest of the pigs in the farm.
Crossing a sow on heat./Piglets asleep in creep area./Loading feed from town./Feed stock.
Support to Christian youth fellowship musical album production:and
Support to phase two of the church building project:
It is a necessity that we what we preach, so given the fact that we are privileged to be having quarterly support from Japan which is more of a blessing for us from God, we need to share this blessing with others who don't have just like the Christian youths fellowship CYF, who have made their direct appeal for support from us.
Also our church congregation engaged in the second phase of the construction work with the intention of reaching the roofing level so we pledged to support the project with 30,000 francs so that together we can accomplish the roofing of the house of God.
Digging of water bore-hole below the piggery:
Water is life, they say, so our piggery cannot survive without a sustainable supply of water. We had to engaged in the process of digging a bore hole to the extent that water could now be visible at the bottom. We measured in the month of March and discovered that it was actually full to the height of 1.5 meters from the bottom. We carry water now manually from it and use in the piggery as well as at home. Our next task is actually to protect the walls from collapsing with concrete rings and that will be followed by obtaining and installing a water pulling machine inside the well.
Bore hole as seen from above with/without temporal concreted mouth to prevent rain water from getting in.
As you will notice from the financial statement bellow in this report, the group that founded the cooperative,
'Mobile Livestock' is the main fund raiser for the cooperative, judging from the fact that money raised by this group both from its field work activities as well as funds lobbied from partners abroad by the same group is used to run and sustain cooperative activities.
This is because, as the founder/vision bearer of the pig cooperative, no matter how financially weak and unstable the cooperative will find itself, the founders will do everything possible to see it survive even through the most difficult times.
You can also note that the cooperative's main income sources as prescribed by the cooperative laws/articles of association have dropped drastically such that if it has to depend on those income sources for the sustenance of its activities, then it would have long closed its doors.
Therefore, the cooperative is highly indebted to the Mobile Livestock group to the extent that if we have to separate the common basket fund management system,
then it will imply that the cooperative automatically will not survive because the members can no longer support its day to day financial needs.
To make things worse, the ongoing armed conflict in Cameroon which started in 2016 and the COVID-19 pandemic prevention restrictions has made it difficult for members to have their regular group/cooperative meetings during which annual dues are mobilized, patronage of feed sales as most of them have been internally displaced and rendered economically powerless.
Given the fact that the pig cooperative management at the moment depends greatly if not solely on its founding organization to which its leadership belongs, we can therefore conclude with certainty that any support fund directed to Mobile Livestock group is automatically assistant given to the cooperative either directly or indirectly depending on the project in question.
We are optimistic that the cooperative's current membership and would be members will slowly and surely regain their economic/financial stability such that they will together put their strength to push further the agenda/dream and vision of the cooperative in the months and years ahead.
It will be interesting to note that the founder of the cooperative who doubles as the cooperative project coordinator is a veterinary nurse by profession. He graduated from the national veterinary school Jakiri, in Cameroon in 1993.
Because of his close attention to his late father's building construction profession he became a talented and skilful builder over the years. Starting from foundation to the roof level he personally did the construction of his family home progressively from 2001 till the present day. The pig cooperative building in Bawock, realized in 2013 and 2014, was also constructed by him.
He also gives a free hand of assistant to many pig farmers in the construction of their pig styles in several communities as well as the maintenance and construction work on the Mobile livestock farm project.
Gifted with multi-tasking ability, the cooperative project coordinator besides responding to the daily calls for veterinary prophylactic field activities and the cooperative's multiple assignments still finds some free time to raise some income for his large family from building and construction work for people within the different communities.
He is being assisted sometimes by his eldest sons, Fabrice and Justice. Bellow are pictures of some of his most recent building and construction works besides the above piggery feeders and drinkers for Mobile livestock farm.
"Reading, interpreting and realizing construction work projects according to the approved plan is my hobby".
Family Guest home under construction.
Reaching out to farmers within the crisis period is sometimes very challenging as one risk being shot by a stray bullet. When travelling either on bike or on foot, we need to pay close attention to the behavior of the people ahead of us because their actions may tell us if it is either safe ahead or dangerous.
We also need to have a good sense of listening because the sound of a gunshot may be coming from far or near so you can judge when to depart from your safe zone.
The inability to hold cooperative coordination meetings due to the on-going armed conflict that has lasted for over 3 years now has been further worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Due to the pandemic, it became imperative to implement the multiple safety precautions by the state to ensure that we remain safe such as;- social distancing, regular washing of hands, the use of hand sanitizers, the wearing of face mask and the advice to stay at home and come out only when it is very necessary.
Most members have been internally displaced due to the crisis and so most have equally sold their stock of pigs because of the social instability as a consequence, they can no longer patronize the cooperative's feed sales business as well as support the cooperative by paying in their usual annual dues.
In this regard, the financial situation of the cooperative is quite weak and therefore requires support from people of good will if we have to sustain the vision and dream of the cooperative in order to patiently wait for peace and calm to return.
Another very serious challenge is that of frequent electricity power cuts under the pretext of load shading. This makes office work with the computer difficult thus necessary now to seek for alternative power sources to help charge our computer and phone batteries.
As members of mobile livestock, it is our obligation as the founding organization of the cooperative that is hosting the head office within the town of Bamenda where periodically life is seen to be going on normally, together with the few available cooperative members living within town to make sure we protect and prepare a take off point for the others who will join us as soon as life returns to normal.
While respecting the COVID -19 restrictions, we will be organizing some farmer training sessions in the months ahead in order to keep their memories afresh. It is clear that no food, no life, so irrespective of the current challenges, we must keep moving because we have to survive.
Mobile livestock has to continue feeding the pregnant sows and taking proper care of the sows that will farrow in late July 2020, so that we will observe the sociopolitical climate and the COVID-19 pandemic, to see the feasibility of inviting some farmers to start off and continue with the PASSING ON THE GIFT initiative of Djouke the Dutch girl, supported by the SOS Japan initiative.
The T-shirts are currently being sold but we are planning to put on/wear the T-Shirts when we have an opportunity to send out the message written on it especially during the occasion of giving out female piglets and feed to farmers as we plan to do so this year either late September or early October 2020. Because, we do not know yet how many females will be available from the two sows in the mobile livestock farm, we may be tempted to buy from another farm to make up the number we intend to give out to farmers.
We are therefore appealing for support from our regular partners abroad, in the Netherlands and Japan to assist us in September for this event, everything being equal, that is if there is no escalation of violence due to the ongoing crisis by the time.
From creation in 2004, the main objectives of the cooperative were to fight the Feed, Marketing and Disease crisis of pig farming and this idea could be seen engraved in its triangular logo FMD. If we have to rank our level of success with the different objectives over a hundred within the past years, we can do that sincerely as follows with the following reasons;-
|Objective||Ranking/100||Remark/Reason for rank|
Several trainings have been organized on feed composition and most farmers now have engaged in the use of improved feeding methods as a consequence.
Ready composed feeds are sold at the cooperative but the rate of patronage by members is low but rather members of the public are making more use of the service.
The general change of feeding methodology/mentality has been achieved to a greater extend.
Marketing of pigs by the cooperative is not moving in line with the initially intension of doing collective sales of members pigs. This is because of lack of capital to pay off the farmers before proceeding to sale the pigs in external markets as the pig dealers are successfully doing.
Marketing of adult pigs is achieved by slaughtering but yet the frequency of doing so is not that encouraging. The marketing of piglets belonging to members by the cooperative is more successful than the marketing of adult pigs owned by members.
In the mediation process of marketing, the cooperative makes very little or no profit from the transaction and this is contrary to our initial internal arrangement.
Several trainings on farm bio-security were organized over the years and incidents of disease outbreaks have been seriously mitigated to the advantage of the farmers.
There is intensive routine farm follow-up by the cooperative project coordinator who is a veterinarian. He keeps regular contact with most if not all the farmers and carry out regular preventive treatment measures.
Providing preventive/prophylactic Health-care service is one of the main objectives of Mobile livestock which is the founding organization of the pig cooperative.
Despite all the efforts to prevent disease we still have some isolated disease cases occurring seasonally each year.
From the above ranking, judging from where we were in 2004, we can therefore conclude today that we have succeeded to a greater extend to uphold our dream and vision within these passed years by working closely within the frame work of our key objectives. It is our wish as we optimistically hope that with our regular partners by us, the future will be bright, God willing.