A few years ago, Rebecca Akidor could not imagine that one day she would be feeding her family with food from her own garden.
The mother of five is all smiles that the unimaginable has now come to pass thanks to PanAfricare through the IMPACT Program.
To improve access to nutritious diets, PanAfricare rolled out the cone garden technology, which has been impactful in communities.
The IMPACT Program’s goal is to reduce the rates of malnutrition among children, pregnant and lactating women in Katilu and Turkwel wards of Turkana County, by improving access, availability and utilization of nutritious diversified diets.
KNA visited her in her garden at Nadapal village in Loima Sub- County. She carefully tends to the growing vegetables, while she picks jute mallow (murere) leaves. The nutritious jute mallow leaves will be part of her family’s next meal.
Previously access to diversified diets was a challenge to her and most households in the area. This has contributed to the high malnutrition rates in the area.
In addition, low agricultural production means a low supply of food or high food prices.
PanAfricare through the IMPACT Program funded by Bayer Fund, supported a women’s group to set up vertical conical gardens. The first phase saw the women receive five cone gardens fully equipped with a tank, fence, shade net, and irrigation system set. The goal of this intervention was to increase access to nutritious vegetables.
On the five cones grows jute mallow, coriander, tomatoes, and kales. Akidor is quick to note that the cone gardens have been of great help in providing her daily supply of vegetables.
“The gardens utilize less water compared to the other gardens. Being a very dry region, the cone garden technology works here very well because the shade net and the watering system ensure water is always available to the plants.”
Akidor says the kitchen garden has been helpful in providing her family with daily vegetables. She notes that she now saves on what she would have spent on vegetables and only budgets for the maize flour.
“We have also realized that they are more productive. I wish we had more of such gardens in this village because I am sure we would all have sufficient vegetables. We would even have a surplus because they are very efficient and highly productive.”
By Peter Gitonga