Fish Pond helps Family Get on Their Feet
Poly (22), wife of Reajul of Village: Uttar Kazir Hawla , Union & Upazila: Rangabali, District: Patuakhali. They had a difficult start to their married life together. They lived in a one-room hut with Reajul’s father. Their major income came from Reajul and his father who worked day jobs and rented a small tea stall where they sold betel leaf to their neighbors. Their daily diet consisted of rice and rentils and the occational vegetable grown in their small yard. Before joining Nobo Jibon, Program they had recently sold their only cow and taken a Tk 10,000 (about 120 USD) microcredit loan in order to purchase a twenty decimal plot of land, including a twelve decimal pond.
Poly join Save the Children‘s USAID funded Nobo Jibon Program in May’2011 while pregnant with their first daughter, Marana. Nobo Jibon combats childhood malnutrition and food insecurity in rural Bangladesh, offering services that include nutritional counseling for mothers, food rations and support for income generating activities. Through the program Poly received antenatal counseling and the couples received inputs and training for fish cultivation in the pond on their land.
As of March 2012, they have earned Tk. 12,000 from the first sale of fish and they worked hard to invest this money wisely. So far, they have purchased two goats and small solar panel for indoor electricity, made repaired to their house and invested in merchandise for the shop, which now earns twice as much as before.
Poly and Reajul did not stop with the pond. They were inspired when a relative, another NJP beneficiary began to learn homestead gardening. Visiting her often, they learned the techniques and started their own home garden. Today there is reach in vegetables and fish. Poly, who steel attains nutrition’s counseling’s sessions, each proud their ability to provide a healthy diet for Marjana, which is now nine months old. She is able even to occasionally purchase new cloths and food for her.
Poly also Says that she feels more empowered in her marriage as a result of her informant in Nobo Jibon. Since she bears most of the responsibilities for looking after the pond and vegetables garden. Her husband involves her in decision more frequently now. She says proudly, “ I won’t believe the difference a fish pond and vegetables gardens can make in a person’s life if I had not done it myself”.