My name is Michael Oyagha. I am a public speaker, an author, Agripreneur and a legal practitioner. I reside in Lagos, Nigeria. I was born on June 21, 1979 to the family of Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Oyagha. I was born into a polygamous family of 16 children of which I am number 10.
My father was a furniture maker until his death while my mother is a petty trader. My father could not afford luxuries for us while we were growing up however; he made it a point of duty to always provide anything that concerns our academics to the best of his ability. Most times, we had to depend on extended family members, neighbours and friends to help us through school.
- My Project
The objectives of my project are to create wealth through pig farming, contribute to the reduction in the rate of unemployment in my community and equip youths with the skills to become agripreneurs through internship opportunities.
I intend to rear pigs, starting with three sows and one boar which will be kept in different cubicle in the pig pen until when they are set to mate. I will build a small pig pen made of bamboo and blocks (this is meant to help reduce the cost of constructing the pen) and install a water shower in each of the cubicle for bathing the pigs and to keep the pen clean at all times. I will dig water well to supply water in the farm. This is preferable to sinking a borehole.
By the time the initial sows give birth, they will be transferred to the farrowing house and upon weaning of the piglets; they will be separated from their mothers, according to their sex. Within one year of the commencement of the project, I should have between 15 to 27 pigs excluding the initial boar and sows.
As for the socio-economic impact this project will have on my community, I intend to make a provision for regular internship for those who might want to acquire pig farming skills on the farm free of charge. This is apart from the creation of employment opportunities for the unemployed youths in the community. This project is very realistic and sustainable.
One of the things that motivate me to do this project is the government policy in my Country and the economic events around the world. From my observation, I have come to the conclusion that agriculture is the next big thing. The fall in the price of crude oil has rekindled the need for economies to diversify and it is very important for Agripreneurs like me to take advantage of the opportunities this has presented.
Also, growing up was not very easy for me and I know that there are several other families or persons who are going through what I went through. The daily desire to impact the lives in my community positively, the need to contribute my quota in reducing the high rate of unemployment in my Country and creating value in my society, amongst others, are the things that motivate me.
Apart from the projected revenue to be generated by the project for me, the youths in my community will benefit greatly from the project through the internship opportunities, creation of employment opportunities for them and they will be considered first for every job opening. I also intend to generate electricity from the pig dung to serve my farm and my immediate community.
- Steps Leading to the Success of the Project
The following are the steps I intend to take to achieve my goal. To start with, I intend to build a bamboo pen for the pigs and install shower system, purchase the sows from a farm while the boar will be purchased from another farm; this is meant to guarantee a pure bloodline, dig water well for the purpose of water supply, acquire a truck for the purpose of transporting the feeds, fruits and vegetables to the farm.
I will also engage the service of a veterinary doctor to attend to the pigs once a week or as the need may arise, engage the service of a farm Assistant to help with the work on the farm and I intend to use the social media as a tool for advertising my farm produce and getting interns to participate in the internship program.
- Steps Taken Thus far
In order to get my project started, I have done the following; I have already acquired two plots of land (about 1,200 square meters) in a remote village. This gives me the chance to expand the project as the need arises. Also, I paid several visits to other pig farms to see what other pig farmers are doing and also to have an idea of what should be done and what should not be done as it relates to pig farming.
Apart from that, I have made enquiries on what it will cost to dig a well for the supply of water, the composition of pig feeds and how I can locally source for and produce my pig feeds. I have read several books and other materials on piggery and also gotten a veterinary doctor on standby to attend to the pigs as soon as the project commences.
- How do you measure your success?
To measure the success of my project, within the first year of the commencement of the project, I will use the earned value management (EVM) to analyze scope, cost, and schedule of the project. This will help to ascertain if the project has met with its set objectives.
Also, I will consider the number of employment opportunities that has been created and the number of interns that have applied to and participated in my internship program. Lastly, I intend to carry out a survey in my immediate community to determine the level of benefits the project has provided to the community.
- How do I plan to use the US$5000 grant?
With the grant of US$5000, I will build the bamboo pig pen and install shower system for the pigs. This will cost me US$1,500. Thereafter, I will dig water well for the purpose of water supply. This will cost US$500. After which I will purchase three sows and one boar. This will cost US$500.
I will acquire a small truck for transportation. This will cost US$1,500. The consultancy fee to the veterinary doctor for the first year of operation and pending when the project will start yielding revenue will cost US$520 and the salary for the Farm Assistant for the first year of operation and pending when the project will start yielding revenue will cost US$480 (at US$40 per Month).
Blogpost and picture submitted by Michael Oyagha (Nigeria) – moyagha[at]yahoo.com
The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.
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