Empowering Nyagatare’s Women By Addressing Malnutrition

Kirabo Phionah, a DOT Rwanda beneficiary

Malnutrition is a serious problem that affects millions of people worldwide, regardless of their age or socioeconomic status. It can have long-lasting and sometimes irreversible effects on physical and mental health, making it crucial to address and prevent. One young entrepreneur and social innovator who has taken on this challenge is Kirabo Phiona, who founded Poultry farming for Development (POFADE), a social enterprise that uses poultry farming to address malnutrition and empower women in Rwanda.

Kirabo phionah collecting eggs - DOT Rwanda

Kirabo Phiona recognized the issue of malnutrition in her community and decided to take action by starting a social enterprise that provides nutritious and versatile food – eggs. POFADE focuses on egg production as a solution to malnutrition since eggs are a good source of protein, rich in essential nutrients, and promote brain health.

Poultry farming is the practice of raising domesticated birds, such as chickens, ducks, turkeys, and geese, for their meat, eggs, or feathers. POFADE started with just 15 chicken layers in 2020, and it has now grown to raise 500 chicken layers that produce 10,000 eggs per month and 450 eggs per day. Their target audience includes wholesalers, restaurants, community members, and other food industries.

POFADE’s mission is to sustainably improve the social and economic lives of its community members. The social enterprise’s core business is egg production, but they also aim to empower women through its Women Empowerment Initiative. This initiative targets beneficiaries such as teen mothers and vulnerable women, who are often at a greater risk of experiencing health and social challenges, including poor maternal and child health outcomes, economic insecurity, social isolation, and gender-based violence.

Women and youth empowered by DOT Rwanda

To empower these women, POFADE provides them with the tools and resources they need to succeed, such as sex education and entrepreneurship skills through different training and field workshops at their poultry facility. Through this initiative, Pofade is not just providing a solution to malnutrition but is also creating employment opportunities and developing women’s entrepreneurial skills to impact their livelihoods positively.

POFADE’s vision for the next years is to increase its scale and become one of the best poultry farmers in Rwanda, impacting more than 500 women through the provision of employment and other skills that bring change in their lifestyle. This vision aims to create a sustainable future for women and their families.

Poultry farming is not just about egg production. It has the potential to transform communities by empowering women, providing a solution to malnutrition, and creating employment opportunities. POFADE’s founder, Kirabo Phiona, has demonstrated that with dedication and innovation, one can make a difference in their community.

Through POFADE, Kirabo Phiona has shown that even small-scale poultry farming can make a significant social and economic impact on a community’s sustainability. With POFADE’s success, it is possible to inspire more entrepreneurs to take up innovative solutions to address the problems facing their communities.

Kirabo Phionah is a beneficiary of the Daring to Shift project funded by Global Affairs Canada (GAC) under the pillar of Social Entrepreneurship to support young women and men (aged 18 -35 years) to identify opportunities to make a difference in their communities and turn their business ideas into enterprises that address important community challenges, an innovative and creative multinational program that supports youth and young women as social innovators and change-makers in their communities. Daring to Shift is Equipping 7,650 Rwandan youth with digital skills, life skills, and 21st-century skills for business and employment.

Also Watch: Breaking Barriers: Empowering Women and Transforming Communities through Poultry Farming

Written by Alain Remy Mutuzo-

DOT Rwanda YLAB Member