Tuesday, March 24, 2015

ALIN launches Nolororo Horticulture project


By Joyce Okuta
The Arid Lands Information Network (ALIN) on March 13, 2015 launched Nolororo Horticulture project in Ilchamus ward in Marigat Sub County.  ALIN in partnership with Act Change Transform (Act!), with financial support from Department for International Development (DFID) and Swedish International Development Cooperation (SIDA) is implementing a climate smart agriculture project in Baringo County with the aim of strengthening communities’ resilience to impacts of climate change while conserving natural resources.
The launch was attended by Marigat Sub County Administrator, Ilchamus ward Member of County Assembly (MCA), Ilchamus ward administrator, Sub-county Agriculture Officer, Environment and Natural Resources officers, Agriculture Sector Development Support Program (ASDSP), ALIN project manager and Matwiku Horticulture Growers self help group.

Guest being shown the Nolororo Horticulture Farm
The project supported Nolororo women group to establish a drip irrigation system for horticultural production. The group members have been taught about plant protection, harvesting, value addition and marketing. They are now using drip irrigation technology to produce nutritious food.
Among the exhibitors included; Nolororo women group, Kerio valley development Authority (KVDA), Kapkuikui Self Help Group, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries development, National Irrigation Board (NIB) and Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources.
Speaking while launching the project, Mr. William Chelal, Marigat Sub-county Administrator lauded the efforts made by ALIN and other organization in uplifting the livelihood of farmers. He said that the field day was a wakeup call for the people of Baringo County to work hard in order to be empowered.
“It is a high time for the farmers to adopt appropriate technologies to ensure sufficient food production. Farmers should join organized groups in order to tap the vast opportunities available in the county,” said Mr. Chelal.
Hon. Wesley Kakimon, Ilchamus ward MCA said that he is ready to support Climate Smart Agriculture Initiatives in the area, since the initial cost for installing the drip kit is affordable and the county can support such initiatives.
Guests following proceedings during the launch of the project
He added that the community should embrace such technologies to avert poverty. He encouraged members of Nolororo women group to train other groups about the technology.
Mr. Levis Saning’o, Ilchamus ward Administrator noted that the project has eased the work of Nolororo Women group as they are now able to get time to engage in other development activities in the community. He noted that previously the group used to spend close to 8 hours irrigating their farm and this used to be expensive as they had to hire labour.
On his part, Mr. Noah Lusaka, ALIN Project Manager thanked the county government for the cooperation given throughout the project implementation. He pointed out the dissemination done on Sauti ya Mwananchi radio and Standard Newspaper as an indication that the work done by Nolororo women group is known.
”The group has realized a drastic reduction in use of fuel for pumping water. This has reduced emissions and also reduced time spent irrigating the farm. This has also helped to mitigate the effects of climate change as well as increasing food production,” said Mr. Lusaka.
The objective of the event was to demonstrate to communities and stakeholders the various opportunities in food production using minimal water resources and appropriate technologies as an adaptation strategy to climate change.
The Nolororo women group activities focus on practicing Climate Smart Agriculture. This is agriculture aimed at reducing emissions at the farm level, conserving natural resources like soils and water while increasing nutritious food production at household level at the same time increasing family incomes.
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