First ever women’s livestock market in Tando Allahyar

HYDERABAD   –  The Research and Development Foundation in collaboration with the district administration has organised the first ever Marui Women’s Livestock Market in Tando Allahyar under the European Union funded Growth for Rural Advancement and Sustainable Progress (GRASP) Project.

The RDF spokesman informed here on Saturday that the objective of organising the women’s livestock market was to encourage female led SME and livestock farmers for trade and business in the livestock sector. More than four hundred women livestock herders and farmers came to sell their animals and there were around 500 buyers both men and women who purchased goats, sheep and cattle from the women sellers.

There were also outlets of livestock related products such as desi ghee, butter, green fodder and other accessories. Some females also set up the sales outlets of tea and food products. Sindh Livestock Department has also established vaccination camps at the market to ensure vaccination of all animals. The vaccination added value in sales of animals and gained trust of the buyers too.

The Vice Chancellor Sindh Agriculture University Tando Jam Dr Fateh Muhammad Marri, Provincial GRASP ITC Leader Shabnam Baloch and Executive Director RDF Ashfaque Soomro jointly inaugurated the women livestock market.

Talking to media persons, Dr Fateh Muhammad Marri said usually women manage livestock but they hardly sell their animals in the country particularly in rural areas. Livestock is the second major livelihood source in rural areas of Sindh in which primarily women are engaged, he said and added that this intervention would lead to empowering rural women both economically and socially.

Shabnam Baloch said there is huge potential in the livestock sector which is untapped yet. Women entrepreneurs, dealing in the livestock sector are facing numerous challenges which can be addressed with gender sensitive management models, she said and added, GRASP aims to flourish business opportunities for the rural women in Sindh and this step is ahead in women led livestock business.

GRASP is a six years project funded by the European Union and is being implemented by UN ITC in partnership with Research and Development Foundation in 12 districts of Sindh with the objective to alleviate poverty through strengthening rural Small and micro enterprises in horticulture and livestock sectors, she informed.

 Ashfaque Soomro said that with this first of its kind intervention, the women-led SMEs and farmers have received a platform of trade and business. The market facilitated women buyers and sellers to expand and uplift their businesses in the livestock sector, he said and added the response of women sellers and buyers is very encouraging.

Rozina, a livestock farmer from Mirpurkhas brought 50 goats for sale in the market, who while sharing her views said that she was happy to get a chance to come to the women’s livestock market to sell her livestock.

The women’s livestock market was visited by a number of officials from INGOs, local NGOs and academic institutions who appreciated the efforts of organizers.

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