ACORD, with support from Swiss Inter-Church Aid (HEKS), mobilized communities to engage in fishing as a viable economic activity in the area.
Toko is one of the fishing groups in Mangala Payam of Terekeka County that has benefited from the support provided by ACORD. Toko and nine other fishing groups from the area were provided fishing gears and local canoes to facilitate their fishing activities. The groups also received technical training on modern fishing and fish preservation methods. The training is meant to ensure that their produce is competitive in Juba Market.
Working with these fishing groups has had influence factor on young men like Lodule Samuel, who dropped out of school. Lodule, a 22-year-old, struggled in vain to attain a livelihood, eventually joining the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) following the mid-December 2013 violence that broke out in South Sudan.
After nearly two years in the bush fighting rebels, he did not find what he had hoped for, prompting him to return home.
Samuel later joined Toko Fishing Group this year after having a length conversation with Paulino Draga, the chairman of Toko Fishing Group. Paulino, who excel following the support he received from ACORD, advised his nephew to join him in fishing. Paulino has managed to buy a canoe from the incomes he gets from fish sales.
Samuel says he can see the difference since he joined the fishing camp. “I can now buy food, clothes and I sleep in a better place, unlike when I was in the army,” he says.