For a long time farming in Turkana County has faced a myriad of challenges. The harsh climatic conditions have reversed the gains made in agriculture in Turkwel and Katilu Wards.
In an effort to improve the production of nutritious food crops, Africare has distributed assorted farming tools where each farmer received a forked hoe, hoe, machete/panga, rake tool, and a spade. Through the farming tools distribution program, 590 farmers have benefitted while 2,950 tools have been distributed.
Catherine, a farmer in Turkwel says the tools will make it easier for her to prepare her land for the planting season in October. “Most farmers here lack adequate farming tools. This affects the output and even the quality of food we produce.” Mariko another beneficiary in Turkwel added. He notes that farming methods have largely remained traditional saying farmers in some areas still use sticks.
In Napool Irrigation Scheme Maximilla Akiru monitors a tractor ploughing her section of the scheme. She says mechanized ploughing loosens the soil and makes both planting and weeding easier. It also aids in crop roots development leading to a better harvest.
The irrigation scheme had been idle for three years and had overgrown with bushes. Through the land rehabilitation program, Africare facilitated the bush clearing paving way for smooth ploughing. Since the commencement of the clearing land ploughing program in January, Africare in partnership with Turkana County Ministry of Agriculture has ploughed 88 acres of land in both Turkwel and Katilu.
Through the financial support from Bayer Fund, Africare continues to impact farmers in Turkana County. Plans are underway to desilt irrigation canals to provide water to the farms. In some sites, farmers will be provided with water pumps to irrigate their farms.
Africare agriculture officers regularly visit the farms to guide the farmers on the right time to plant and advise them on the correct nutritious crops to grow. IMPACT’s goal is to reduce cases of malnutrition through sustainable farming. A food-secure community means access to alternative diets which results in healthier people.