Kamala is 36 and has three children, one of whom has a brain tumour. Her husband is a daily-wage labourer and prior to her poultry enterprise with Nirdhan their household income was very low.

Kamala registered for PDS in 2012 and received her first poultry toolkit of 10 one-day old chicks from her Nirdhan Livelihood Service Provider, Prenundu Biswas, a few weeks later. Prenundu trained Kamala and her family how to build a coop and raise healthy chickens. He also helped her with some financial advice and how to market her produce.

Kamala now has a regular income from selling eggs and chickens and has laid the foundations for a much bigger coop to expand her business. She is also able to pay the medical expenses for her sick child.

Hens start laying eggs when they are about six months old and Kamala was very proud when one of the hens from her toolkit laid the very first egg. She presented that beautiful, fresh egg to Chandrani Banerjee, Nirdhan’s Head of Livelihood Programme, insisting that she take it back home to Kolkata on the crowded train and give it to her daughter for breakfast. Chandrani obliged and the egg (poached for breakfast the next day) was delicious!