Kenya lies on the equator on the East African Rift, covering a diverse and expansive terrain that extends roughly from Lake Victoria to Lake Turkana (formerly called Lake Rudolf) and further southeast to the Indian Ocean. It is bordered by Tanzania to the south, Uganda to the west, South Sudan to the north west, Ethiopia to the north and Somalia to the northeast. The capital, Nairobi, is a regional commercial hub. Agriculture is a major employer; the country traditionally exports tea and coffee and has more recently begun to export fresh flowers to Europe.
- Capital: Nairobi
- Population: 49.7 million
- Language: English and Kiswahili
- Kenya is perhaps best known for its middle and long distance runners, with the country frequently producing Olympic champions
Our History in Kenya
Food for the Hungry (FH) has been active in Marsabit since 1976. FH partners with communities to facilitate locally based initiatives to support increased resilience of vulnerable households and communities, helping them to prepare for and mitigate the impact of disasters, shocks and stresses. This encompasses long-term development approaches to connect marginal communities and regions with economic and social opportunities as well as provision of direct humanitarian support in crises. FH Kenya is currently working with communities in Marsabit and Meru counties.
In 2021, FH impacted 74,000 individuals in over 12,000 households in Marsabit and Meru counties, particularly those affected by drought and the health and economic impact of COVID-19 and desert locusts.
WHERE WE WORK
Marsabit County: Saku, Moyale, Laisamis and North Horr sub-counties
Meru County: Buuri Sub-County
Recent closed-out projects in Isiolo and Samburu counties
- Marsabit Town
- Isiolo Town
- Sololo (Moyale Sub-County)
- Kalacha (North Horr Sub-County)
Food Security and Livelihoods
FH implements interventions that address food production, access, safety, and income. Major focus in the Arid and Semi Arid Lands (ASALs) include animal health and production, crop production, livestock market systems, use of social behaviour change approaches to encourage use of livestock markets, policy interventions, natural resource management and economic empowerment. FH/Kenya works closely with communities and self-help groups to expand knowledge and skills in financial literacy, agribusiness and other off-farm income generating activities.
Current drought response FSL efforts are focused on provision of cash transfers, enhancing access to livestock feeds and animal health services, food and non-food items to families affected by drought and displaced by conflict.
In response to the 2008/09 Global Food Price Crisis, FH led the OFDA-funded Arid and Marginal Lands Recovery Consortium from 2009-2013, a program that resulted in significant progress towards efficient and sustainable markets in Marsabit, providing key income generating opportunities that enhanced pastoralists’ resilience to drought and other shocks. During the 2010-11 drought, FH was the lead in WFP-funded general food distribution and blanket supplementary feeding. Between 2015 and 2018, FH worked in partnership with UNICEF to facilitate integrated nutrition outreaches in Marsabit County. In response to the 2016/17 drought, FH led a $3 million, multi-sector response in Marsabit County with support from USAID, Unicef, Tearfund (DEC), and other donors.
Using a systems approach to increase household access to water for multiple uses and improving sanitation and hygiene practices to reduce disease and malnutrition. This includes strengthening capacity for effective water governance and management at the community level and expanding stakeholder involvement from the county government and the private sector. From 2015 to 2021, FH was part of the $35 million Kenya RAPID program, a consortium led by the Millennium Water Alliance and funded jointly by USAID/SDC/private sector and consortium partners. FH led the initiative in Marsabit County to increase access to water and sanitation for people and water for livestock and to rebuild a healthy rangeland ecosystem. A follow-on project is currently underway with support from SDC. FH also partners with Procter & Gamble in Marsabit County to develop sustainable access to clean and reliable drinking water.
Current drought response initiatives include water point rehabilitation, emergency water trucking, point-of-use water treatment distribution, essential hygiene behavior promotion.
Education and Health
FH works with communities and the local government to address barriers to quality education for all children. Improving student learning outcomes is a priority; using a Cascade Group model, FH empowers caregivers to strengthen young (0-3 years) children’s cognitive and emotional development even before they start their formal education. The FH sponsorship program in Marsabit and Meru counties provides children and their families with access to education, economic opportunities, healthcare, clean water, and protection from abuse and discrimination.
FH works in partnership with the Government of Kenya and the Ministry of Health to implement interventions that reduce maternal and infant mortality such as proper nutrition, sanitation, hygiene, complete and timely immunization. This includes increasing access to healthcare and improved service delivery, especially in rural communities.
FH uses an integrated approach to strengthen the resilience of communities affected by recurring drought and conflict and enhance their ability to respond to future shocks. This includes using a Risk and Resilience Framework to work with communities to systematically identify and mitigate the impact of hazards they face by reducing vulnerability and increasing their ability to cope with those hazards.
- The Kenya Arid Lands Partnership for Integrated Development Plus (Kenya RAPID+) Program; Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation; 2021 – 2026
- Marsabit Child Education, Participation and Livelihood Promotion Project; Erikshjalpen (ERIKS); 2022 – 2023
- Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program, Phase III; Proctor and Gamble (P&G); 2022 – 2024
- Kenya Red Cross HIV/AIDS Global Fund program to contribute to achieving Vision 2030 through universal access to comprehensive HIV prevention, treatment, and care; 2021 – 2023
- Early Childhood Development Strengthening Project; FHUK; 2022 – 2025
- Livelihoods Recovery in Meru County, FAO – September 2022-Jamuary 2023
- Marsabit Drought Response Project, ERIKS – July 2022 – January 2023