Error converting data type nvarchar to bigint. A successful farmer helps to teach neighbours about sustainable development - Bóthar

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A successful farmer helps to teach neighbours about sustainable development

PIRRO Jongari and his wife live together with their three daughters in the Gorre community in Albania.

Now 58 and 54, Pirro and his wife Lefteri have always worked and lived as farmers. Today they are a model in their community for successful farming, thanks to Bóthar’s support.


They were both left with no job and no future after the collapse of communist system. They lost their jobs in the state farm, where she used to work as an agronomist while he as a farmer. The only thing they inherited from the state was the small patch of land, their only source of living for them and their three young daughters. They had no cow, just the possibility to work on their land and raise some crops, vegetables, etc. As they say, it was never enough for their family and the situation was not getting better with their limited resources and no opportunities for work.

Half of the families in Gorre community had no cows and thus no milk for their children. Those families who did have cows usually had animals with low productivity that provided minimal incomes. The technical level of the farmers and the animal breeding conditions were really poor. The farmers were not pulling together effectively as a community and preferred to work separate from each other. Frustrated, they felt their community efforts reminded them of the unsuccessful former cooperative farms.

In response to a need for vision and direction, the ‘Integrated Dairy Development Project’, supported by Bóthar, was established in 1999. The project offered a pregnant Holstein heifer and training to the Jongari family.

Pirro and his wife Lefteri embraced the project and threw themselves into working with their animal heart and soul. They recognized the great opportunity the project provided for the future of their family. Following the training and technical support of the project, Pirro and Lefteri adapted their stables according to Bóthar advice, and improved their animal feeding and management. They started to get milk and dairy products for their children, and things started to improve.

The family’s hard work was rewarded by the high milk productivity of their animal as she started to yield an incredible 25 liters of milk per day! In the first year, the family passed-on the first offspring of their cow to another family in the neighborhood, while working even harder to get the highest productivity.

Pirros farm started to grow and the number of cows in his herd increased, year by year. In time income from the sale of surplus milk started to increase and with the assistance of Bóthar specialists Pirro decided to expand his stable units and to build an open-air stable, away from his home. Today Pirro and Lefteri have 10 cows in their farm.

The income from their farm is greatly increased, as they now sell about 200 litres of milk per day. They are successful in their work and they’re a model for their community. Income from their farm has allowed them to purchase an oven and some furniture for their house. But the biggest success and investment, as they say, is the education of their girls.

‘Two of our girls have already finished university, while the youngest is in its third year’ says Pirro proudly.

Pirro has even bought a small milking machine and continues to invest in the farm.

Today Pirros farm is visited as a model for development by farmers from different villages and regions of Albania, sharing their experience and success with everyone. Ever modest, Pirro and his wife say that they count their blessings daily to have been afforded a hand up through Bóthar and ‘Integrated Dairy Development Project’.

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