Makueni and Kitui counties geographically lie in ASAL region. Most households in these counties rely on subsistence rain-fed agriculture. Agricultural losses due to climatic shocks, pests and lack of technologies have increased in recent years while employment opportunities remain limited. As a result, food insecurity and malnutrition levels have gone up in the two counties.
Smallholder farming households in these counties face challenges due to; insufficient access to and high costs of climate-friendly technologies and inputs, poor infrastructure and inadequate information on agricultural practices and markets, which further prevents them from adapting their agricultural practices to the changing climate in an environmentally friendly way. Supporting climate change adaptation, promoting climate-friendly technologies and green employment opportunities, and thus preventing further degradation of the environment are not only crucial for productivity of rural farmers in these counties but for sustainable economic development and growth of the entire country.
Brief description of the project/Project Objective
The overall objective of the project is that Green economic growth and thus employment and income are improved in rural communities in Makueni and Kitui Counties through the application of sustainable consumption and production patterns.
The project will be implemented by Caritas Kitui which through its various programs protecting and improving livelihoods and strengthening resilience to negative effects of climate change has reached over 240,000 vulnerable households in Kitui and Makueni Counties, and RECONCILE which conducts policy and legal research on environmental and natural resources governance and empowers resource dependent communities to influence policy processes and advocate for policies, laws and practices in relation to natural resources.
The objective of the project will be achieved through a target group consisting of 9,000 persons who will be reached directly and 27,000 persons reached indirectly all largely from agro-pastoral households, including youth. These numbers include multipliers, such as 30 Natural Resource Management (NRM) Community Resource Persons (CORPS), 20 Agroecology CORPS, 50 Mango farmer CORPS, 61 Crops and food handling CORPS and 14 school patrons. In addition, 1000 businesses comprising Micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) will be reached through material support and training. Support to MSMEs will ultimately benefit the entire community by increasing employment opportunities. As the businesses will be engaged in environmental conservation and a shift towards environmentally friendly practices/technologies, this will also result in reduced pollution, producing a common good for the community.
In addition, the project will reach out to an estimated 100 government officers in all the 47 counties in Kenya through NRM advocacy dialogue platforms. The project will target wards and villages that were not reached by the KEN 1170 with activities. The targeted will hence not overlap.