Helping Somali livestock farmers to make a better living
We worked in partnership with the BBC Somali Service, the Africa Educational Trust, the European Union's Rehabilitation Programme for Somalia and a wide range of stakeholders to increase the knowledge and skills of all those working in the livestock sector.
Start date: July 2006
End date: June 2008
Media type: radio
Barnaamijka Xoolaha ('The Livestock Programme') was a 30-minute weekly magazine-style programme. It aimed to empower livestock producers, traders and others with the practical skills, technical knowledge and business awareness necessary to maximize their incomes from livestock.
Over a period of 30 months, local production staff were trained to produce 130 educational radio programmes.
Five hundred 'learning groups', where both men and women met to listen to the programme and discuss the issues raised, were also established.
I am regularly updated about the price of livestock by the programme. I therefore go to the market knowing the price
Abdi Yusuf Farah, Dila, Awdal Region
Barnaamijka Xoolaha covered a range of livestock topics, including:
- Market prices
- Animal health
- Detecting fake drugs
- Business skills
- New economic opportunities
"We have learned about very important issues from Barnaamijka Xoolaha - how to improve the quality of our livestock, and about animal husbandry, health and vaccination. I am regularly updated about the price of livestock by the programme. I therefore go to the market knowing the price."
Abdi Yusuf Farah, listener, Dila, Awdal Region
The programme also included interviews with farmers, vets and livestock traders.
Several panel discussion programmes, designed to enable a public debate of key issues relating to development of the livestock industry, were also broadcast.
- Markets, prices and marketing
- Animal health services
- Product diversification
- International support
- The degradation of rangeland
Audience feedback was recorded and broadcast to stimulate the discussion and debate.
The producers of the programme sourced information from:
- Somali livestock traders, brokers and transporters
- The Somali chambers of commerce
- Livestock boards
- Vet organisations
- Slaughterhouses and small business owners (such as milk traders, meat sellers etc).
The producers of the programme also maintained regular contacts with all the main livestock markets in Somalia, as well as markets in Yemen and the United Arab Emirates on a weekly basis.
Community learning groups
144 Somali facilitators were taught how to use a radio-based curriculum to provide face-to-face training to 'community learning groups' across Somaliland, Puntland, and Southern Somalia.
Members of the group listened to the programme, and the facilitator guided them through learning activities which helps consolidate knowledge they've heard in the programmes.
Our partner, the African Educational Trust, interviewed 600 people involved in the livestock sector in Somalia to assess the impact of the radio programmes. The vast majority - 97% - were from rural areas.
- 91% of those who answered this question listen to the radio
- The BBC World Service was the most popular station, with 97% of those interviewed listening to the BBC
- 79% of those interviewed had heard about the livestock programme, and 63% of respondents had listened to the programme
All the programmes were co-produced and broadcast by the BBC Somali Service.
The African Educational Trust operates in regions of Africa where formal structures for education are absent, or have been broken down by conflict and civil war. It works closely with local communities to provide access to school materials and tuition.
A consultative committee consisting of representatives from international and Somali non-governmental organisations and other key stakeholders was set up to review and feedback on the content of the programme.
Members of the committee included Terra Nuova, SAHSP, Vetaid, FSAU, Penha, Candlelight, Havoyoco, Hargeisa Academy for Peace and Development and Somaliland's National Vet associations.
Barnaamijka Xoolaha was part of a wider European Union initiative to support the livestock sector in Somalia - the European Union's Rehabilitation Programme for Somalia.