Nicholas lives outside of Kakamega town, in Kakamega county. Kakamega county is located in Western Kenya, close to the Ugandan border. It contains the only tropical rain forest in Kenya, and the variety of the flora in the region makes it well-suited for beekeeping. It has one of the highest rural population densities in the world (in some areas, close to 600 people per square kilometer), which may contribute to the region's high poverty rates.
Nicholas is married, and has seven children. He has been farming for thirty years, and is currently growing maize and vegetables on his land. He is excited to start beekeeping because "it is a long-term project, and it is cheap compared to other projects."
This is Nicholas' first loan, and he plans to use the income generated from his hives to help educate his children, and to expand his farming activities. In the future, Nicholas hopes to save up enough money to "build a good and comfortable house for my family."
About Honey Care Africa
Honey Care Africa (HCA) is a for-profit social enterprise that trains smallholder farmers to become commercial honey producers and provides ongoing support for hive owners. Founded in Kenya in 2000, it is a member of the World Fair Trade Organization and aims to increase the income of rural farmers throughout East Africa.
Kiva lenders’ funds will help HCA make loans in the form of a certain number of beehives per family to jumpstart income. This new approach will simplify the process of hive purchase and honey production and will enable HCA to reach many more farmers. Farmers will repay the organization the same way they would for a typical loan.
This Kiva loan will be used to provide borrowers with needed goods or services, as opposed to cash or financial credit.