Teacher makes extra income from farming

21 October 2020 | Agriculture

STAFF REPORTER

WINDHOEK



Farming activities can become an extra income for many Namibians.

A science teacher at the Oshilungi Combined School, Anneli Mutumbulwa, chose not to depend on just her monthly salary by engaging in farming after school to sustain herself and her family.

According to Agribank, she started farming in 2014 with a few goats and cattle on a subsistence level at her homestead at Oshiyashomatope village in the Oshikoto Region. In 2018, she started attending Agribank farmer training and lecture sessions. “From 2018, I took farming seriously. I started farming with chickens, and now in a period of one year I am able to sell up 2 000 chickens. Though the salary is there, this has become another income stream to sustain me throughout the month without necessarily have to wait for pay day,” she said.



Don't give up

Apart from farming with livestock and poultry, she has also ventured into gardening and tree orchards. She sells her produce at the Ondangwa open market as well as to individuals. Mutumbulwa said although farming can be rewarding, it also comes with a lot of challenges that requires persistence, determination and constant monitoring of the farm. “One of the characteristics of a farmer is to not give up. You must be strong,” she said.

“You find a person who started a chicken farm, disease broke out and they lost their flock. From such, the person gives up. You do not need to give up, just dust yourself off and try again and that is an attribute of a true farmer,” she advised.

She said one of the challenges she faced in her farming journey was lack of farming skills, however, with the Agribank training, she gained some skills on rearing animals as well as growing crops that she also shares with other farmers in her vicinity.



Farming as a business

Mutumbulwa urged women to move away from the perception that they cannot farm and to begin treating farming as a business just like any other that comes with challenges and rewards.

“To my fellow women, I notice most of you like to do telephonic farming. You can never get it right if you are that type of a farmer. Never say you are woman. A woman can do what a man can do. If you farm with cattle, start visiting your animals regularly, know your animals and do inspections, in that way you can identify problems early and act accordingly,” she said.

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