The government has released seeds, seedlings and other related inputs worth Ksh 22 million for distributed to farmers under the Drought Resilience and Sustainable Livelihoods Program (DRSLP) to the Counties.
The farm input package is part of the DRSLP initiative which also included the rehabilitation of Irrigation Schemes, Water Pans and Earth Dams, Boreholes, Shallow Wells and Sand Dams.
The State Department for Crop Development and Agricultural Research is implementing three projects funded by the Africa Development Bank (AfDB), a grant from the Global Agriculture and Food Security Programme (GAFSP) and the Government of Kenya.
These projects are, Drought Resilience and Sustainable Livelihoods Program in the Horn of Africa (DRSLP-K), Small Scale Irrigation and Value Addition Programme (SIVAP) and Rural Livelihoods for Adaptation to Climate Change (RLACC).
Speaking during the flagging off of the consignment at Kilimo House today, Chief Administrative Secretary, State Department For Crop Development And Agricultural Research, Ministry Of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries And Cooperatives Anne Nyagah said that so far the project has reached 61,796 households as beneficiaries who are mainly pastoralists and agro-pastoralists.
“DRSLP operates in six counties namely, Turkana, West Pokot, Baringo, Samburu, Isiolo and Marsabit since 2013”, she said
The CAS explained that in order to address their need for food and nutrition security as well as income generation, the Ministry through the Project Coordination Unit (PCU) has planned to set up demonstrations for food crops, including Kitchen Gardens, fodder production and irrigated agriculture as COVID 19 response initiative.
In the March -May rains, Nyagah said that the PCU purchased seeds and seedlings worth Ksh 7.8 million which were distributed to 11 SIVAP counties and through their initiative the ministry also launched the ,“One Million Kitchen Garden Initiative” .
SIVAP is operating in Makueni, Kajiado, Machakos, Bomet, Tharaka Nthi, Meru, Nyeri, Tana River, Murang’a, Nyandarua and Kitui.
“My Ministry through the project has set aside Ksh 500 million to support the one million kitchen garden initiative through provision of kitchen garden kits to 213,090 households in 21 counties”, the CAS said
Today’s consignment included various seeds from Amaranthus, Cowpeas, Dhania, Pulses and Cereals, Water melon, finger millet and also fodder as well as fruit seedlings such as yellow passion, macadamia, tree tomato, avocado , oranges, Mango and pawpaw that will benefit the 6 counties
The government has during this time of COVID 19, emphasised on the need to ensure household members have strong immunity by producing and consuming nutritious vegetables. It has also been spearheading this initiative of food and nutrition security at household level.
By Wangari Ndirangu