Vast fields of sunflowers and canola surround the village of Darabani in southeastern Romania. Danut Silion lives in this area and saw an opportunity in the flowers blooming in the fields. Raising bees and selling the honey could supplement the meager income he made as a part-time watchman at a local company.
After apprenticing with someone who had 200 beehives, Danut bought four hives of his own. Within three years, his four bee colonies had multiplied to eighteen. Wanting to expand the work, but having no source for the funds it would take, he applied for help from CAM’s Family-Self-Support fund.
With a $2,700 boost from the program, he purchased wood and tin for additional hives, metal and wheels for an old wagon chassis, a honey extractor, and a few other tools and essentials. By the end of that season, he wrote a note of thanks to CAM, saying he had established 40 bee colonies.
Today, ten years after receiving funds from CAM, Danut and his teenage son work more than 120 hives. The income from selling honey helps meet the needs of a growing family of seven.
Due to the droughts prone to Darabani, some years the honey flow lasts only about a month. This can lead to weak hives going into winter and a smaller production the following year. Danut would like to buy a bee truck, which would enable him to transport about seventy hives to other areas during times of drought.
“An integral part of beekeeping is keeping blooms in front of the busy bees so they can make honey instead of sitting at home eating it,” says Ellis Schrock, our Romania distribution director. Flowers and trees bloom at various times, so Danut could also move his hives from area to area wherever things are blooming.
Danut and his family are prime examples of how a little financial boost can make a big difference for a needy, hardworking family. In his letter, Danut said, Brothers, thank you in God’s name for the financial assistance. Our entire family thanks you in the Lord Jesus’ name.