68 farmers Self-Help Groups today received cheques amounting to Sh44M to facilitate their micro enterprise projects to thrive in value addition of livestock by-products and locally available farm based produce.
The project, an initiative between The County Government of Kajiado and The World Bank Group attracted 191 proposals from Self-Help Groups including Vulnerable and Marginalized Groups.
A total of 139 groups from Kajiado West, Kajiado South and Kajiado Central Sub Counties were approved for inclusion in the project.
Speaking during the occasion at the County Headquarters, H.E. Joseph Lenku said the value chain project is appropriate in view that livestock rearing and especially tomato farming have continued to stir business conversations in the County while cementing the backbone of agricultural production in the Kajiado.
“I am glad that the farming project targets community empowerment through value chain in tomato farming and meat production,” he added.
He said for the longest time women and children had been considered as the most vulnerable group in the society and termed the composition of the target groups by the project as noble.
Lenku was optimistic that the success of the project in the three pilot sub counties will hopefully upon proper evaluation attract more funding from The World Bank with more Wards benefiting from the program.
He committed to work closely with the World Bank in ensuring that more deserving ventures are funded in the near future as a way of empowering communities and the enhancing the livelihood of the people.
At the same time the Governor challenged the youth to embrace agri-business as source of employment and a means of alleviating poverty in their communities.
Agriculture and Livestock CEC, Jackline Koin said since its inception in 2017, the project has made major in-roads in teaching farmers on livestock and crop farming.
She added that the selection process for the target sub counties and Self-Help Groups was transparent with strict parameters set out in a baseline survey done in six Wards in Kajiado East, West and Central in 2007.
These included poverty levels in the Wards, vulnerability to climate risks , absence of similar initiatives to avoid duplication, presence of priority value chains, geographical proximity to Wards and presence of Ward Level technical officers.
The 68 farmers’ self-help groups that received their cheques today have been trained in modern farming techniques and business skills including proposal writing and marketing.
Those in attendance were Kajiado County MCAs, County Government Officers, Stakeholder representatives, Local leaders, farmers among others.
The Kajiado South Farmers Expo took place at the D.O’s grounds in Rombo. The EXPO brought together farmers from all the Five Wards of Kajiado South(Imbirrikani,Kimana,Lenkisim,Kuku and Rombo)
The Farmers came in their thousands thirsty for new knowledge. The farmers were subjected to new information by over 30 exhibitors ranging from Agro Chemical ,Agro-Business consultants, Irrigation companies, Dairy experts, Modern Kitchen equipment’s to Seed and livestock experts and research firms.
The Exhibitions were designed such that each exhibitor had a 100 seater tent .Farmers upon registration were put into groups and would take seats in each exhibition for a 20 minutes class before they move into another exhibition. During each class, farmers would be given an opportunity to ask questions on whatever challenge they are facing on specific farming applications and given instant solutions without referral.
Farmers came into contact with experts from the private sector and government Agencies like Karlo,Kephis,Simlow Seeds,Ensda among others.
Farmers were taught on the dynamics of crop rotation, Soil science, application of chemicals, irrigation methods, quality of seeds and value additional on both crop and livestock produce.
During the Expo all farm products by the various exhibitors were sold at a subsidized rate.
The Kajiado South Farmer was not the same in the evening as they came in the Morning!
Kajiado County Department of Livestock Development has embarked on a massive program to vaccinate more than 800,000 livestock against trans-boundary diseases. The one month drive will see 400,000 heads of cattle against Foot and Mouth Disease, PPR and Rift Valley Fever. A further 400,000 sheep and goats will be vaccinated against Blue Tongue.
Governor Joseph Ole Lenku launched the program at Maili 46 in Iloodokilani Ward, Kajiado West Sub County. Agriculture and Livestock Development Chief Officer Moses Murrunya said Kajiado East, Kajiado South and Kajiado Central Sub Counties will be covered.Governor Lenku said the program will save thousands of livestock from dying due to the diseases. The risk of the diseases has been heightened by increased movement of livestock between Kajiado and Narok Counties as well as across the Sub Counties.
“I encourage our livestock keepers to get the vaccinations. We are working on mitigation measures to ensure the effects of the drought are reduced,” he said.Governor Lenku asked herders to be mindful of each other and share the available pasture and water as the situation will come to an end.
“Let us be our brothers’ keepers during these hard times,” he added
On behalf of the County Government of Kajiado H.E the Governor invites all the residents of Kajiado and other Kenyans of goodwill to a goat auction exercise on Monday 3rd September 2018 at the County Demonstration Farm, Kajiado Town.
The purpose of this event is to assist 5000 needy and vulnerable families within the County uptake medical insurance by the National Hospital Insurance Fund, NHIF. This is in line with the County Governments Mbuzi Moja Afya Bora Initiative that stems from the Universal Health Care pillar of the Big Four Agenda as spearheaded by H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta.
The Deputy President H.E. William Samoei Ruto will officiate this activity and the Governor urges all residents to show up in large numbers for the success of this noble venture that will ultimately benefit Kajiado people by improving their well being.