By Shavonne Potts
John F. Kennedy once said “One person can make a difference and every person should try.”
A Salisbury woman is aiming to find out if that sentiment can become a reality for a foreign mission project she is spearheading.
Linda Hunt went to Kenya in April to do missionary work with her brother ó her second trip to Africa. While there she was inspired to reach out to women in Kenya.
Hunt explained that most people in Africa live and thrive in conditions that people here could never imagine.
“So I, of course, looked for a way to be of assistance. I was impressed with the fortitude of the Kenyan people,” she said.
Hunt sat down with Margaret Achro, a Kenyan businesswoman who owns a small Internet cafe and store to see how they could help the women in Kenya.
Together, the two women came up with the idea of a chicken farming program.
Hunt explained that many of the women in Kenya are raising their children alone due to the deaths of their spouses because of AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis or abandonment.
Hunt said God gave them the idea of providing chicks for the women to become chicken farmers.
The project would be funded through donations.
She said for as little as $5 anyone can make a difference in a family’s life. The decision on how to give or how much to give rests with the individual person.
“You decide, you can do a one-time donation or monthly donations, whatever God speaks to your heart,” she said.
The idea is for Hunt and Achro to select a woman who must show financial need and be willing to complete the program.
The women decided to call the program Sister to Sister Chicken Little Project, which stems from a childhood story of a chicken who screams “The sky is falling, the sky is falling” when an acorn drops on her head. The moral of the story is to have courage.
“For many of these women, the sky we look up to every day is falling,” Hunt said.
“Give a mother a chicken dinner and she can feed her children a meal; give her a chicken and she can provide for her children for life.”
The program is sponsored through Outreach Christian Ministries, located at 722 W. Horah St., Salisbury. In 2006, the church raised money to provide bicycles to Kenyan ministers. Hunt is returning to the same villages and cities they visited, including Nairobi and Eldoret.
The program guidelines say the women must be willing to learn the business, open a savings account, contribute a percentage of her profits back into the program, mentor new members and learn record-keeping.
“We also want our women to contribute an initial fee based on their ability to pay because we feel that it is important that the women be invested in the program,” she said.
After receiving the chickens, turning around to make a profit should take from four to six months.
“The overhead for this project is minimal and the profit a woman can receive over time can make the difference between being able to provide for her children or excavating through local garbage dumps looking for food,” Hunt said.
The potential for a woman to progress through this program is excellent, she said. For example, a woman can add vegetable farming or progress even further to raising goats, cows.
“The startup expenses are minimal. All a woman needs is a yard and a water source and, for the cost of $5 each, we can provide the chickens,” she said.
Hunt and Achro would like to give each woman a minimum of three chickens to begin a business.
“This is a great opportunity to engage your family, co-workers, youth program, Sunday school or organization in a worthwhile project that addresses the statement that Jesus made when he said that what we do for the least of his little ones we do unto him,” Hunt said.
She added that all money donated will go exclusively to this project.
Anyone who wants to donate to this program may make checks payable to: Chicken Little Project c/o Outreach Christian Ct. International, 722 W. Horah St. Salisbury, NC 28144.
For more information, contact Hunt at 704-212-7137.
Contact Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253 or spotts@ salisburypost.com.
By Shavonne Potts