Don Gaspar and his wife, Jacinta
At the beginning of 2013, Save the Children implemented elite modules, which were provided with support from ABC News and the project Improving Food Security and Health for Families in Coffee-Growing Areas in Guatemala
Gaspar, 65 years old, and his wife, Jacinta, 63 years old, joined the Project due to their experience and interest.
The aim of elite modules is for them to be collection and training centers to benefit nearby communities. To that end, they were given 5 milk goats of different breeds, which are able to produce 1.5 liters of milk each.
Gaspar lives at the Actxumbal community, better known as “LA PISTA”, which is located in the municipality of Nebaj, in the Department of Quiché, 8 kilometers from the municipal capital, and accessed by means of a dirt road. It is there that the project started with 5 adult goats and now, there are 16 goats, whose 11 kids were born from imported studs. “It is obvious that these animals are finer and that they have better reproductive characteristics, and I see a significant difference between them and the one I had before”, explained Gaspar.
But this was not so before. Don Gaspar stated that in previous years, he raised goats extensively and empirically, since he did not have the proper goats for adequate production, nor the appropriate facilities for proper management.
“I had been looking for support, not only to build facilities, but also to acquire knowledge, training, and technical advice about goat management, but unfortunately, I had not found help for this type of goat production. Then, ASAUNIXIL (local association) recommended me to Save the Children, to be one of the candidates to receive an elite module. After a series of evaluations, trainings and consultancies, I was able to achieve my desired project. That is why now I have appropriate facilities, milk goats, and technical knowledge on goat raising.”
This is a result of Gaspar’s and his family’s efforts. They have been trained on several issues. “By implementing this module, they have been providing me with support on several issues relating to goat management, as well as on sub-production of goat-derived products.”
The training that he has received has helped him, and reproducing goats with good-quality imported studs has improved his herd.
“As a result of this project, I have improved my small farm, and I have been able to support my grandchildren so that they can drink milk and eat cheese and goat meat”, said Gaspar.
But the benefits have not only been evident in the family, but also for the community. “I provide support by training new beneficiaries who will be receiving goats. I tell them about my experience and I show them that goats are a good alternative to fight malnutrition among my people, and besides, that the benefits I obtain include organic fertilizers to use on my crops.”