Beekeeping Training in Central America
Help Central American families obtain a stable income source from a sweet source -- beekeeping!
What could be sweeter than honey? The added income that beekeeping means for farming families in central America. For small coffee farmers who have been adversely affected by wildly fluctuating prices, beekeeping is a new skill that provides more economic stability and opportunity. Plus, by pollinating crops, honeybees provide a vital service to local farmers and grassroots agriculture.
Through Mercy Corps' Small Species Project, Mercy Corps gives farmers the tools they need to start raising honeybees. Your donation helps farmers taste the sweet rewards of a marketable skill -- one that helps keep their families healthy and sends their kids to school.
Angela's Story (Story credit: Mercy Corps)
Angela Quiix is not afraid of bees. In fact, she's embraced them for the benefits they bring to her family and community.
The 31-year-old mother of six helps raise bees in Xalache, a Mayan village in northern Guatemala. "I like it because it's easy and practical," she says as others pump smoke around her to quell the remaining bees in her hive. In her hands she holds the fruits of today's harvest: a honeycomb dripping with sweet, organic honey.
Last June, Mercy Corps showed Angela and 11 other women how to become beekeepers and supplied them with materials for 20 hives. The group responded by harvesting 5,000 Quetzales (about US$700) worth of honey in the first year.
The village consumed about 15 percent of the honey themselves, then bottled and sold the rest to restaurants and hotels in Coban, the regional capital. With the profits they purchased supplies for another 18 hives and stocked away money in the community's savings-and-loan cooperative, which helps community members buy livestock and increase their production of cardamom and corn.
"This project contributes to our family income," says Angela. "Hopefully it will contribute to the education of our children, too."
Donations through this Mercy Kit support the entire mission of Mercy Corps, and will be used where most needed to help children and families in need.
Mercy Corps exists to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping people build secure, productive and just communities. Mercy Corps works amid disasters, conflicts, chronic poverty and instability to unleash the potential of people who can win against nearly impossible odds. Since 1979, Mercy Corps has provided $1.5 billion in assistance to people in 106 nations.
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