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Best Practices on Indigenous Knowledge MOST/CIRAN
TANZANIA BP.11

TITLE

Participatory Animal Health Programme and Ethnoveterinary Development Programme

DESCRIPTION

Although these two programmes are separately funded and each have their own team leader, reporting requirements and time lines, they are essentially two branches of the same programme. The programme as a whole was set up to promote livestock activities and to record and make use of ethnoveterinary practices to help increase household incomes. Maasai pastoralists have conserved the rangelands and wildlife of Northern Tanzania for the past 150 years, but they are now losing grazing land as a result of crop farmers from other areas encroaching upon their land. Combined with an expanding human population, the increased density of livestock has led to problems with diseases which traditional strategies are unable to cope with. As a consequence, the traditional pastoral economy of the region is under threat of collapse.

The Participatory Animal Health Care Programme trains community animal health workers (CAHWs), while the Ethnoveterinary Programme gathers ethnoveterinary knowledge (EVK). The most transferable EVK is used in the training of CAHWs. Every practice must be evaluated before it can be transferred. Some practices will not be transferred, even if they are known to work, perhaps because of animal welfare considerations (e.g. firing, branding, castration using stones). Others may not be transferred because they were found not to be useful for validation, or because the plant required for the treatment is hard to find. The community animal health workers are chosen by their community to be trained in animal health practices. There are several criteria for choosing who is to be trained. The main criteria are literacy, youth, membership of the community and a commitment to stay in the area. Prior EVK experience is useful but not necessary, as the community adds traditional training in animal health to the conventional CAHW training.

THEMES:
TRAINING, ANIMAL HEALTH, VETERINARY MEDICINE

COUNTRY: TANZANIA
Region: Simanjiro District

INDIGENOUS ASPECTS

Ethnoveterinary knowledge is used to treat livestock and prevent disease. It can sometimes be more effective than orthodox drugs and is a useful stopgap when drugs are not available.

SUSTAINABILITY

Economic sustainability: low inputs of drugs, cost-effective

Environmental sustainability: use of natural medicine

Other types of sustainability: preserving ethnoveterinary knowledge

STAKEHOLDERS AND BENEFICIARIES

The main stakeholders and beneficiaries are community members and NGOs. The programme was initiated by Vetaid Tanzania. The community chooses CAHWs and provides them with EVK, while the trainers provide conventional veterinary training. There are between 1000 and 5000 stakeholders and beneficiaries involved.

STRENGTHS & WEAKNESSES

STRENGTHS

The programme doubles the capacity of community animal health workers to treat livestock, as they can make use of both conventional medicine and IK.

WEAKNESSES:

  • Not all ethnoveterinary knowledge is safe or easy to use. Some practices (e.g. firing) affect the welfare of livestock adversely and should be discouraged.
  • the peer reviewer mentioned the generation of income for the animal health workers. Without some form of renumeration the project might not be sustainable.
IT IS CONSIDERED SUCCESSFUL BECAUSE:

It provides an integrated approach to livestock health care that is sustainable economically, environmentally and culturally.

SUCCESS EXPRESSED IN QUALITATIVE OR QUANTITATIVE TERMS:

Since the programmes are only just into their second year, it is not yet possible to say whether income has increased. However we do already know that herders have benefited from community animal health workers. In addition, ethnoveterinary practices have been recorded and are ready to be analyzed so that they can be validated and used in community animal health training.

POTENTIAL FOR REPLICATION

It is quite easy to transfer the practice, although some adaptations might be necessary.

Similar programmes are being considered by IT Kenia and other livestock development NGOs such as Veterinaires Sans Frontières-Europa.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Some of this project information is taken from the VETAID projects website at: http://www.vetaid.org/ under ‘projects’ and then under ‘Tanzania’.

PERIOD:
From: 1997 to ….

BUDGET:
700,000.00

SOURCES OF FUNDING:

  • Austrian Develoment Cooperation
  • Bilance
  • DFID
  • National Lottery Charity Board
CONTACT PERSON:

Marina Martin
VETAID - United Kingdom (see below)

ORGANIZATIONS INVOLVED:

Organization that provided this information:

VETAID-UK
EH26 OPZ Midlothian
United Kingdom
Telephone: +44-131-4456241
Fax: +44-131-445-6242
E-mail: mail@vetaid.org
Url: http://www.vetaid.org/


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