I am Resilient: A life changing business

Habiba Hudhow  nyirinyiri (camel) meat trader in Wajir in a meeting with other women of her group. Photo Credit: Benson Guantai

Habiba Hudhow, 49, makes a living of selling nyirinyiri, a meat-based specialty, at the market, in Wajir, Northen Kenya.

Every morning, she goes to the meat market to get the best part of the meat stake. When it comes to nyirinyiri, she believes that she has to make one which is second to none: a quality her customers look forward to.

“I buy meat from butcheries in town, particularly camel steak, because it’s a major diet for the locals. The meat is cut into pieces of 15cm length and is left to dry;  this is done to remove the moisture before it’s chopped into fine cubes. It is then cooked with ghee and a mixture of garlic to improve its aroma.”

“Making nyirinyiri requires a lot of preparation: one has to be clean themselves; you need specific tools and kitchen hygiene is importatnt too, as even the smallest contaminations can spoil the whole thing.”

Habiba used to make nyirinyiri, traditionally but this is history now.

“When Oxfam trained and equipped me, it opened all doors. Nowadays we get numerous orders from customers, which would not have been possible without the equipment that helps me prepare the meat in a short period of time. Our sales have grown because our meat is packaged and labelled, encouraging customers to buy it, like any other meat available in the supermarkets.

My customers range from wedding ceremonies, families who have visitors, as well as women who need already prepared meat. This business has uplifted my capacities, it has enabled me to pay school fees for my children, be it those in primary, secondary or even university!“