FOOD SECURITY

State invests Sh110m in nutrition in Marsabit and Turkana

Project seeks to improve food and nutrition security among pastoralists communities

In Summary

• Over 2, 600 people have been trained in improved animal husbandry for milk production.

• 1, 600 women and men have started kitchen gardening as a new activity and 4, 903 women are in saving groups. 

Mathias Braun of Germany Development Corporation and Agriculture PS Hamadi Boga who received motor vehicles from GIZ at Kilimo House, Nairobi
DONATION: Mathias Braun of Germany Development Corporation and Agriculture PS Hamadi Boga who received motor vehicles from GIZ at Kilimo House, Nairobi
Image: DOUGLAS OKIDDY

More than 10,000 households in pastoral communities are set to benefit from a Sh110 million government nutrition project.  

Agriculture and Research PS Hamadi Boga said the One World No Hunger food and nutrition project seeks to improve nutrition in  Marsabit  and Turkana  counties.

He said the ministry now has a unit on nutrition. Previously, nutrition was about heath and health workers communicating about a balanced diet. 

He spoke on Monday in Kilimo House while receiving motor vehicles for the agri-nutrition unit project from GIZ.

"As we implement the 100 per cent food and nutrition security agenda, the nutrition component is silent even within the ministry. If someone doesn't grow the food, it will not be available and will remain just information,” Boga said.

Over 2,600 people have been trained in improved animal husbandry for milk production.

“Another 1,600 women and men are now practising home gardening as a new activity. 1,440 women and 130 men have improved the management of wildly growing plants for food and fodder, while 4,903 women are organised in saving and loaning groups. They are also advised on income generating activities, how to operate micro businesses to generate additional cash incomes,” Boga said.

The PS said the five-year project was aimed at ensuring that the food and nutrition situation of people at risk of malnutrition is improved, especially women of reproductive age and young children under the age of five.

“In order to tackle the manifold causes of malnutrition and undernutrition in an integrated manner, the project connected measures from a variety of sectors, including agriculture, health, education, social protection and WASH - water, sanitation, and hygiene,” he said.

Paul-Mathias Braun, the GIZ Agriculture and Rural Development cluster coordinator, said they are working with 10,000 households.

He said 300 nutritionists have been trained in giving nutrition services to the locals, which includes selection of locally available food, proper cooking methods and having a diverse diet especially for infants. 

“We have also trained 350 county staff and we have worked with 55 health units giving these services to the women on a regular basis. We are also working on drought resistance where 452 county staff were trained on planning and constructing small irrigation sites. This will benefit about 6,000 households,” said Braun.