With the Small Grants funding, Kiyanga Environmental Conservation Association gave out 90 beehives to 9 people in Kiyanga with experience in bee-keeping. Within 3 months after distribution, half of all the beehives were already colonised. Honey is harvested twice in a year. From the 10 beehives, a beneficiary will harvest at least 60 liters of honey in 2 seasons. 20 liters fetch 240,000shs. Mr. Patrick Tukamuhabwa is one of the beneficiaries. A beekeeper for five years he said that from honey he will get an income, food and medicine. In addition honeybees are pollinators whose service increases crop yield and helps the ecosystem remain diverse and sustainable.
The beekeepers are facing some challenges. Ants often attack the bee-hives chasing away the bees. There is a belief among the residents that bees spread banana wilt, a disease that has severely destroyed banana plantations in western Uganda.
Kiyanga plans to buy 80 more beehives to give to 8 other people. “And in addition we shall also give honey harvesting gear to all the beneficiaries including gloves, smokers, knives, boots, brushes, buckets among others items,” said Benon Bushoborozi, the group’s chairman.
Packaging remains a problem. “We put honey in empty wine and waragi bottles although our wish is to do proper, competitive packaging.”
So far 3 members with the area have started bee-keeping after learning about the benefits from KECA. They are using locally made bee-hives.
Kiyanga opted to do lorena energy saving cookstoves for several reasons. “We are neighbouring Queen Elizabeth National Park, as well as Karinju and Imaramagambo forests,” said Bushoborozi. He adds, “We have an understanding with the National Forestry Authority to visit the forests at least once a week to harvest fuel wood and with such cookstoves, firewood that would have lasted a week lasts 2 weeks.”
24 people were picked from 5 parishes to get energy saving stoves. By picking a few people from each parish, it spreads the opportunity for other community members that did not benefit to see and learn from the beneficiaries in their locality and possibly adopt. To get a stove, one had to have a strong kitchen – at least semi-permanent. One also had to be sociable to allow people to visit and see how the stove works. The 24 stoves are all functioning.
“Now I use one bundle a week instead of 2 bundles,” said Ms. Edinavence Kajaribu. “There are many people who have come here and are interested in having such a stove.” She adds, “It’s faster, I can manage it alone and I do other things while cooking. I only come to the kitchen to check if the food has water and it has no smoke.”