Irrigation Project Changing The Lives of Kilifi Residents

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Perennial lack of rain has made the Bamba residents in Kilifi move from one area to another in search of water and pasture for their livestock. They face unpredictable weather patterns and prolonged drought which have persisted in the area.

In these severe conditions the local people needed Government and humanitarian organizations to intervene with food materials which is now changing.

Through the construction of water pans to collect water, the residents are seeing a balance between pastoralism and irrigated agriculture that improves their lifestyle.

The residents of Chapungu area are now engaging in growing fast maturing vegetables including tomatoes, kales, eggplants and water melons on a twelve acre piece of land. Thanks to partnership between Car and General and the County Agricultural Office which has been providing expertise on best farming practices.

The farmers had their first harvest this year in February and have injected the profits back as capital for the next crops and to improve the yield through modern technology. This will be a transformative move expected to raise profitability and the living standards of the community in this hot and dry area.

The company has partnered with residents living around the water pans and helped with tilling, seedlings, water tanks and piping and agrochemicals. The inhabitants provide manual labour and mind the farm.

“This project has been an eye opener for the locals and the County Government to engage in profitable farming through irrigation that is a way of alleviating poverty”, said Wallace Chege, Car and General Mombasa Branch Assistant Manager.

The Kilifi County Government has chipped in by providing extra water tanks, irrigation pipes and pumps through the County Water Board. As a result of this support, the farmers are playing their part in the project and are expecting a bountiful harvest this season.