AROUND SLOVAKIA

Beekeeping and sheep farming

The non-profit organisation Heifer Slovakia in Kežmarok is unveiling a new programme to provide useful farm animals such as bees and sheep to needy families and then train them how to care for and propagate the creatures. The organisation’s project, called Dar za dar (Gift for Gift), will soon offer beekeeping careers to ten families in the Laborec Highlands.

(Source: Sme, ján krošlák)

The non-profit organisation Heifer Slovakia in Kežmarok is unveiling a new programme to provide useful farm animals such as bees and sheep to needy families and then train them how to care for and propagate the creatures. The organisation’s project, called Dar za dar (Gift for Gift), will soon offer beekeeping careers to ten families in the Laborec Highlands.

New bee hives will be soon be constructed in the villages of Rokytov, near Humenné, and in Sukov and in the town of Medzilaborce. Pavel Krajč, the coordinator for Heifer Slovakia, told the SITA newswire that the bee-keeping project is being initiated with the help of the Slovak Beekeepers’ Association in Medzilaborce and Michal Haluška, an experienced bee handler. The project is expected to last for six years. First, ten prospective beekeepers will each get ten bee colonies and the original owner of the bees will work as an advisor and guarantor.

In coming year, the beekeepers who received the first bee colonies are expected to give additional colonies to other needy families and also become advisors and guarantors. In this way the number of recipients as well as the number of bee colonies will triple in the second phase of the project.
However, since bees cannot be given to just anyone or to those who are afraid of being stung, the project is being limited to just those individuals and families who have already shown some interest and who know something about beekeeping.

A similar five-year programme involving sheep farming is ready for spring of 2011. The Chovoviec (Sheep Farming) Civic Association will give one sheep bred for milk production to ten families in a poor region of Snina. After the sheep have reproduced, the original families will give offspring to other needy families. The goal of Heifer Slovakia, in addition to improving the environment for bees and returning to traditional forms of sheep farming, is to help the recipient families in improving their living standards and to promote social solidarity.

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