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PO Box A524
Sydney South NSW 1235, Level 11, 227 Elizabeth Street Sydney NSW 2000

Telephone: 1800 812 164

© 2024 Opportunity International AustraliaABN 83 003 805 043

Life for Madina is better thanks to a buffalo loan

By Opportunity International Australia

Madina is a married mother of three and is now running a successful buffalo milk business thanks to a Buffaloan from Opportunity International Australia’s local partner in India.

Her family live on farmland, growing rice and other crops for their own use and selling some, but their income was low. Her husband and eldest two sons work in nearby factories, but the family struggled financially.

Madina with her buffaloMadina hopes income earned from her buffalo will help with her children's future.

With a small loan, Madina was able to purchase three buffalos. She has a busy day tending to the buffalos, feeding them, washing and milking them and then delivering the milk to the local chilled collection point. The milk is then transported to the nearest milk processing facility.

“Our life is so much better than before,” said Madina. “We were always stressed about money, but now we save a bit so that’s helpful.”

Madina uses the leftover buffalo milk to make yoghurt and ice cream and the kids drink the milk as well.

Madina with her daughter eating foodMadina hopes income earned from her buffalo will help with her children's future.

 I want to give my children the best, I want to give them a good education. I am planning on getting two more buffalos. That will help me and help educate my kids."

Reaching more rural women in India with buffalo loans

For women living in rural areas in India, there are few employment opportunities, but with a small agricultural loan to buy a buffalo, women like Madina can become self-sufficient, support their families and transform their futures.

In 2023, Opportunity set out to provide Buffaloans to hundreds more women in rural India, enabling them to lead their families out of poverty. With your generous support, we were able to fund 362 buffalo loans, supporting these women to create a stable income.

While the initial cost to purchase a buffalo is higher, a woman can earn 70 per cent more for buffalo milk compared to cow’s milk, and upkeep costs for the animals are lower. Women in rural India can tap into an existing market for buffalo milk through local milk collection points.

Chetna with her buffaloChetna is another buffalo loan client in Gujarat, India.

“When I visited women who had taken out buffalo loans in 2023, I saw how the buffalos are sustaining the lives of these women and their families,” said Cornelius Chirairo, Head of Strategy and Programs at Opportunity International Australia. “The women-run buffalo projects on the outskirts of the city of Ahmedabad, in Gujarat, are an amazing example of market linkages. The women feed the buffalos, milk them and clean up after them. They keep some milk to feed their family and sell the rest.

The milk is pooled together at the local milk collection depot of Amul, the largest dairy cooperative in the world. One of the women I met shared how valuable her buffalos are to her: ‘When you buy a buffalo, your life is behind the buffalo,’ she said." - Cornelius Chirairo

Learn more about how you can invest in Buffaloans

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