The story of Illias: successful fisherman

8 Jun 2016   |   Blog   |   Bangladesh   |   Long-term Development

Tags:  Bangladesh   |   No comments

“I want other vulnerable people like me to have the chance to change their lives by becoming aware and skilled through training and financial support.”

Illias found it hard to sustain a livelihood for his family until he received training through the Sustainable Food and Livelihood Security (SuFoL) project.

Illias with his wife.

Illias is 52 years old. He has a son and a daughter aged 11 and 12 respectively. His wife is hardworking, takes care of some domestic animals and helps her husband in the field.

Illias cultivates a rice paddy and grows vegetables. He works long days in the field, earns a small income which makes it difficult to save.

Although Illias is a farmer, he also owns a pond which is approximately 0.4 of an acre. This pond is a valuable asset that has helped Illias increase his income to provide for his family. With the help of Caritas,  Illias learnt  how to farm fish, making use of his skills and resources.

Caritas Australia, through its implementing partner, Caritas Bangladesh, trains people in sustainable livelihoods through its SuFoL project. Illias participated in the fish farming training. He received a grant from SuFoL of BDT5000 (A$91) as well as free fish food from the Barisal Fishery Department to help get him started To progress even further, Illias spent an additional BDT17,900 (A$324) from his own funds to prepare the pond, purchase fingerlings, lime, cow dung and additional fish feed. In the five months since he began fish farming, he has been able to supply his family’s nutritional needs and has also earned BDT52,500 (almost A$1000) by selling surplus fish.

Thanks to the training received from the SuFoL Illias now uses modern fish farming methods to meet his family’s food needs and provide for them financially.

Illias’ success showed other villagers how fish farming can be a sustainable source of both food and income and he hopes others in his community are also able to learn new skills to help improve their lives too.


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