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Beekeeping to buffer against economic shocks caused by natural hazards in Somaliland

Generating income for men and women to strengthen the resilience of livelihoods

This good practice fact sheet documents the main lessons drawn from FAO's experience contributing to resilient livelihoods through beekeeping between 2013 and 2015 in Somalia. Somaliland has the world’s fourth-lowest gross domestic product per capita, according to the World Bank, and the population is at risk of different types of climate-related shocks such as droughts and dry spells, with detrimental effects on crops and livestock. In this backdrop, bees can resist a dry season with very little water, foraging in the numerous wild tree species even when it has not rained. In order to improve and increase their honey production, the Reddin Beekeeping Group at Beer village, in the Burao District of Somaliland, received support by FAO through the Sustainable Employment and Economic Development Programme (SEED), funded by the Department for International Development of the United Kingdom (DFID).


  • On gender: Beekeeping provides men and women with the opportunity to supplement their income, while also creating a platform for social change. Both can learn technical skills in beekeeping and business development, and can make decisions on an equal footing, thus transforming a culture where men are considered major decision-makers. The productivity and profitability of beekeeping increased compared to the traditional methods, generating additional income. From data gathered, women – traditionally not beekeepers – were satisfied with the new livelihood and the skills acquired.
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