The Republic of Kenya is an East African nation that lies on the equator and is bordered by the Indian Ocean to the southeast, Tanzania to the south, Uganda to the west, South Sudan to the northwest, Ethiopia to the north and Somalia to the northeast. Kenya’s climate ranges from tropical to arid.
About 24 percent of the GDP is attributed to agriculture. But, due to inefficient farming practices and lack of access to markets, food security remains a major developmental issue. A little more than half of the population lives below the poverty line and much of the population is dependent on food aid.
Heifer's Work in Kenya
Heifer International Kenya was established in 1981. Heifer Kenya targets locations with large populations of small- scale dairy farmers in the Rift Valley and Central Kenya as well as Western and Nyanza provinces. Heifer Kenya also focuses on areas with a high number of orphans and vulnerable children, particularly those with HIV/AIDS. There is also a focus on the pastoralist regions that are suffering from the effects of climate change.
In collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development, Heifer provides training and livestock to farmers. Heifer Kenya also works with other NGO’s to provide leadership, record-keeping and group management training to self-help groups.
Heifer Kenya is involved in the East Africa Dairy Development project, which was initiated in 2008 as a four-year, $42.8 million project funded by the Gates Foundation to help 179,000 smallholder dairy farmer families to double their household income, create, connect and expand dairy market infrastructure and sustainably increase dairy productivity and efficiency.
Key Services Heifer Provides:
Sustainable agricultural production: Soil management; zero grazing for dairy cows and goats and free range grazing for other livestock
Post-harvest management and processing: Storage and chilling plants
Market development: Enterprise development; strengthening farming institutions; new farming techniques and linking to the private sector
Technology: Plows and biodigesters
Nutrition: Food security, agroecology
See where Heifer is working around the world to end hunger.
Judeth is an orphan whose adopted family received chickens from Heifer donors and has since been able to invest in growing their farm.
On Sunday November 17th, Linda McBee and I had the pleasure of going to Fort Bragg to present the pastor, Dan Fowler, and his congregation, with an Ark Plaque for their generous donation of $8,000 for a goat project in Nduma near Nairobi, Kenya. We were warmly welcomed by the church members and were each given a gift of a jar of ingredients to make a winter bean soup.
Last month, for the February school break, I took my 6th grade daughter on a photo safari to Kenya. Just today I published a post in my blog about how my visit to Kenya impressed upon me the need to make a donation to Heifer International.
Elizabeth Bintliff, Vice President for Heifer’s Africa Program, presented a keynote address at the April 2012 8th African Dairy Conference and Exhibition held by the East and Southern Africa Dairy Association.
One of Heifer International’s biggest projects is EADD – the East Africa Dairy Development project.
As we celebrate UN Day of Cooperatives, we also celebrate a new revolution in dairy cooperative development that is taking shape in Kenya.