Kenya Community Development Foundation (KCDF)
The Safaricom Foundation and the Kenya Community Development Foundation (KCDF) worked together to ensure that Kenyan communities could implement sustainable solutions to combat food insecurity that has been caused by the perennial cycles of drought, famine and floods. Through an innovative programme known as "Ustawi" which is Kiswahili for "growth" or "prosperity", communities in arid and semi-arid areas of the country such as Mwingi, Yatta, Isiolo, Garissa, Kajiado, Mbeere, Samburu, Marsabit, Wajir and Mandera were identified to receive funding, equipment and training to enable them to adopt native and more effective farming, storage and water conservation mechanisms.
Through Ustawi, communities which previously depended on rain-fed agriculture, were trained on, and adopted greenhouse farming, drip irrigation, water harvesting and water conservation in order to grow food both for subsistence and commercial purposes. Ustawi has stimulated innovation and provided tremendous opportunities for agricultural diversification and food security and has proven highly replicable across communities and other regions with similar challenges. With technical support from KCDF staff, affected communities received equipment and training to put them on the path towards food self-sufficiency.
Within three to six months, organized community groups were able to harvest food and cater for their domestic need, as well as generate additional income. Bumper harvests in watermelons, kale, spinach butternut, tomatoes, avocados and pumpkins are now a common feature in communities which only a year ago were on the brink of food insecurity.