Update on Beekeeper Training One Year Later – May 2019

Sue met with the 5 schools at Kirume Public Primary School and received a report from each of them on how their hives have been performing.


Sue met with the 5 schools at Kirume Public Primary School and received a report from each of them on how their hives have been performing. It must be noted that a previous meeting was held in 2019 where it was agreed that the distribution of honey should be 70% sold commercially and reinvested into schools, 20% for pupils active in bee-keeping and 10% for staff or KFTs.

1. Kirume School

At Kirume Public Primary School, the garden teacher is Joshua. The beehives have been a huge success at this school as all 8 beehives have colonised. In the 12 months since the workshops, Kirume School have harvested honey twice, collecting 9kg of honey and then 6kg of honey. They commercially sold 3kg of honey for 20,000 UGX per kg (approximately, 4000 UGX = £1). They put their profit of 60,000 UGX straight back into beekeeping and purchased more local beehives and more equipment. They plan to keep buying beehives and expanding.

2. Biwanga CU Primary School

At Biwanga CU Primary School, the garden teacher is Charles. Biwanga School have also been successful and had all 8 beehives colonised. In the 12 months, Biwanga School have harvested once, collecting 10kgs of honey. They commercially sold 5kg of honey at 20,000 UGX per kg. Biwanga School faced some challenges, for example intruders disturbed the bees and termites destroyed a beehive. However, they dealt with these problems very effectively. They employed a night watchman to prevent intruders disturbing the bees and they used medicine to kill the termites. Biwanga School plans to extend the project and buy 5 more beehives.

3. Kyamukona Primary School

At Kyamukona Primary School, there was also success as all 8 beehives were colonised. In the 12 months, Kyamukona School have harvested once. Sadly, however, they harvested in April which was too late in the year and so only received 2kg of honey (the ideal times to harvest are in early February and late July). 1kg of honey was given to the children and 1kg given to the staff and parents. This meant no honey was commercially sold. Nevertheless, Kyamukona School still have plans to expand and add more bee hives. In fact, 2 new local beehives have been made by the pupils. Kyamukona School have faced the challenges of termites, thieves and lack of protective overalls. Their plan to overcome these challenges is to sensitize the community and employ a night watchman.

4. Kasambya DAS Primary School

Unfortunately, Kasambya DAS Primary School faced many challenges in the last 12 months with their hives. Out of their 8 hives, one was stolen and one was disturbed by ants. This meant no honey was harvested this year. However, Kasambya School have done well in tackling these challenges. They have moved the beehives nearer to the staff quarters and hired a night watchman so the beehives should now be safe from intruders. They have also continued to expand; they have bought 4 new beehives and intend to buy 2 more taking their total beehive count to 11. The biggest challenge they face currently is that the beehives need to be in the shade (as shown in picture) so more foliage and flowers needs to be planted. Hopefully, next year will bring more honey for this school.

5. Kasaana Public Primary School

At Kasaana Public Primary School, the Key Farmer Trainer is Chris. All of their 8 beehives were successfully colonised. In the last 12 months, they harvested once from 4 beehives and got 20kg of honey, a fantastic amount. After giving 7kg to the children, they commercially sold 9kg of honey at 20,000 UGX per kg and sold 2kg as honeycombs for 10,000 UGX per kg. They have 4 more beehives yet to harvest. In addition, Kasaana School have bought 2 new beehives. Their biggest challenge is that the children are keen to learn bee keeping and honey harvesting but they lack the equipment and processing materials. Also, the teachers will need to possess more skills in beekeeping in order to teach.

Youth Reports:

10 young people took part in the two workshops held by Food For Thought in May 2018. The first workshop trained the young people in carpentry and the skills they need to build their own beehives. The second workshop taught the young people how to be beekeepers and how to generate income from honey. 12 months later, 5 young people have given us reports of how their beekeeping is going.

1. Obed

Obed already owned 3 local beehives and added 2 Kenya Top Bar (KTB) hives from the workshop. In the 12 months, he harvested 6kg of honey from his local beehives and 4kg from his KTB. He sold all his honey commercially and, with the profits, he bought 3 more KTB hives. His aim with these hives is to be rich! He also gladly reports that he has never been stung.

2. Enosi

Enosi owns a grand total of 10 beehives, including 2KTB. In the 12 months, Enosi harvested 3kg of honey from one of his KTBs and 32kg of honey from his local beehives. He sells each unprocessed kg at 10,000 UGX. He uses his income to pay for school fees and garden work.

3. Nancy

Nancy is a very important beekeeper because she is the only female youth on this programme! She owns 2 KTB and 3 local beehives and they are all colonised. In the 12 months, she has harvested 5kg of honey and sold each kg at 10,000 UGX. With her income, she has purchased wood and built 2 more KTB hives using the skills she learnt on the course which is fantastic to hear! Hopefully, this should provide a ready source of money for her.

4. Ainea

Ainea is from Kyamukona and is new to beekeeping. He has 2 KTB which are both colonised and has built 4 local beehives, 2 of which are colonised. He has not harvested any honey in the last 12 months but we hope he will achieve this soon.

5. Chris

Chris is the Key Farmer Trainer (KFT) at Kasaana Public Primary school and has 2 local beehives and 2KTB but only 2 hives have colonised so far. In the 12 months, he harvested 6kg of honey and sold them processed at 20,000 UGX per kg. Using this income, Chris has planted half an acre of bananas and he hopes to harvest again soon.