Livestock and livestock products are the main source of income for many remote communities throughout Faryab Province, and improving their health is of primary importance to increase prospects for licit sales growth in the Northern region of Afgha-nistan. However, worm parasite infections of livestock reduce fertility, weight, and milk production leading to significant eco-nomic loss. Additionally, access to veterinary care is limited.
To eliminate intestinal parasites and improve utilization of scarce fodder over the winter, USAIDâs Incentives Driving Economic Alternatives for the North, East, and West (IDEA-NEW) project supported a month-long livestock de-worming campaign.
Thirty local paravets (the equivalent of community health work-ers for animals) trained through USAIDâs Accelerating Sustain-able Agriculture Program (ASAP) in 2007, implemented the campaign. The district governments and community develop-ment councils brought people together to have their animals de-wormed. IDEA-NEW provided organizational oversight, finan-cial incentives for paravets, and educational materials for partic-ipating farmers. The US Army and Dutch Committee for Afghanistan provided de-worming medicine and helped to monitor the campaign.
âItâs a great pleasure for us that our animals are given medicine to weaken and kill microbes every winter. I hope most of our animals stay alive and fat after this campaign,â said Ebrahim, a farmer in Bilchiragh District of Faryab. âI only pay one Afghani per goat or sheep to the local Shura. It is a great service and we thank all who helped us in this campaign.â
In total, community development councils raised 277,500 Afg-hanis ($4,900) from medicine administered to the livestock across the province. Communities will use this money for addi-tional livestock services from area paravets.
Working in close collaboration with the Faryab Provincial Direc-torate of Agriculture, US Army, Dutch Committee for Afghanis-tan, and USAIDâs ASAP, the IDEA-NEW campaign underscores the importance of combining resources to make a significant impact on communities.
June 4, 2014