Smallholder farmers in Kenya in the race against climate change
Friday, May 26, 2017
Smallholder farms make up most of the remote village of Siwot in Kericho County. Part of the wider western Kenyan region, most farmers grow maize, beans and vegetables for subsistence, and coffee and sugarcane as cash crops. And like many communities in western Kenya, and in the Nyando river basin in particular, they are aware of the potential that impact climate change will have on their lives and those of their children.
For years, the farmers’ efforts in small-scale agriculture produced little meaningful return. But this did not stop the community from having a collective vision for their prosperity: They wanted to improve their living standards, educate their children, engage in farming as a business and add value to cash crops to increase their income. What they lacked was the knowledge to make this happen. So, in 2008 some 46 men and women from the village got together to form the Toben Gaa Self Help Group with the express aim to achieve prosperity for themselves and their community.