Kenya

Tana River watershed, Kenya

Jane Gicheha collecting rainwater data on the farm. CIAT is working with partners including the Kenyan Water Resource Management Authority (WRMA) and The Nature Conservancy among others to support farmers along the watershed to better manage their land, preventing soil erosion - which clogs up the waterways for other users further downstream. 

Credit: © 2016 CIAT/Georgina Smith
AICCRA-Kenya develops tailored climate information services and digital agricultural advisory services that are gender and socially inclusive.

Our activities focus on improving the quality of climate information services and climate-smart agriculture in Kenya, while increasing access to and use of these resources for women and youth.

We’re facilitating collaboration between Kenya's public and private sectors to develop tailored climate information services and digital agricultural advisory services that are gender and socially inclusive.

By improving how markets function for farmers under climate change and developing user-friendly crop forecasting systems (with a focus on loss and yield) with accessible digital tools and interfaces, AICCRA Kenya is ensuring that useable and actionable information is reaching farmers in an inclusive way.

“As women, we are the breadwinners of our households, so we pay keen interest to our household food security, nutritional needs, and productivity of our farms…we should always be given the priority to be the first to learn from technologies that improve smallholder farming as you have done through this AICCRA project”.

Phoebe Mwangangi, a Lead Farmer on AICCRA CSA demonstration farm, Makueni County

Highlights

Strengthening climate services for farmers through AgDataHubs

AICCRA researchers, with national and international partners, are synthesizing climate and agriculture data to produce climate-agricultural advisories that are more accurate and context-specific.

Harvested information is fed into AICCRA’s Agricultural Data (AgData) Hub, which is processed by the Intelligent Agricultural Systems Advisory Tool (iSAT) to generate ward and crop-specific advisories.

Output messages from iSAT are broadcast via SMS to over 73,000 farmers, extensionists, and pastoralists through Mercy Corp’s AgriFin platform, agricultural value chain management software SourceTrace, and the Kenya Agricultural Observatory Platform (KAOP), run by Kenya’s Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization.

Farmers and pastoralists in Kenya now have access to advisories that provide actionable advice on agricultural land preparation, planting time, livestock markets, rainfall events, and dry periods.

Pastoralists are assigned a series of tasks to collect data using smartphones and upload it into the KAZNET app. (ILRI/Kabir Dhanji)

The power of partnerships for collaborative transformation

AICCRA Kenya works closely with a number of partners who specialize in arid and semi-arid regions:

  • Through ICRISAT, AICCRA Kenya has tested drought-tolerant crops in the Kenyan drylands and demonstrated the benefits to local farmers. With partners, we are now facilitating the multiplication and distribution of the improved seed to farmers.
  • AICCRA’s KAZNET digital crowdsourcing platform is improving both the quality of data collection and the access to climate information services by pastoralists contributing livestock market information (including prices, body condition, and milk yields). Data gathered by KAZNET helps to increase commercial livestock sales and income and provides critical information needed for policy making and prioritization.
  • We’re working with the Kenyan government to 'bundle' climate-smart innovation and technologies in ways that support its targets for climate adaptation, rural development, and food security targets in dryland regions.
  • AICCRA Kenya is developing user-friendly crop forecasting systems (with a focus on loss and yield) with accessible digital tools and interfaces that way inclusively share information.
Boran women with flock of sheep and goats, Garba Tulla, Kenya (ILRI/Fiona Flintan )

Enabling women and persons with disabilities to lead farmer demonstrations to scale the uptake of climate-smart agriculture in Kenyan communities

In Kenya, household farming activities in 'Arid and Semi-Arid' (ASAL) regions are mostly led by women, who—despite being on the frontline of the climate challenge—are often at risk of being excluded from agricultural technology transfers.

Guided by World Bank's Environmental and Social Framework (ESF) standard on the assessment and management of environmental and social risk, the AICCRA team in Kenya together with ICRISAT assessed and prioritized the inclusion of farmers who may be at risk of exclusion in the transfer of CSA technologies in Makueni, Kitui, and Taita Taveta counties.

The emphasis on these measures and the flexibility of the project to accommodate them has inspired progress in locally-led, bottom-up learning to scale CSA. Five of the nine local Agricultural Extension Officers (AEOs)—employed by the Kenyan government and engaged by the project to transfer and interact with the famers on the CSA technologies—are women.

Credit: Owen Kimani

Building on outcomes for a climate-smart future for Kenyan farmers

  • In 2022, AICCRA Kenya reached 36,322 people with seasonal climate advisories through two different channels, including a new partnership with Mercy Corps.

    In the next growing season, the project anticipates an increase in the number by at least 40,000 people through expanded collaboration with Mercy Corps and bringing the collaboration with the Kenya Agricultural Observatory Platform online.
  • Climate Smart Agriculture and Climate Information Systems were integrated into the curriculum of Kenya's Chuka, Murang’a, and Taita Taveta Universities.

    These are the initial steps of mainstreaming CSA training at a professional level. AICCRA also produced CSA training manuals for county-level actors who will use university training facilities for capacity building on extensionists.
  • AICCRA Kenya’s collaboration with Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) and the Kenya Meteorological Department (KMD) under the Kenya Agricultural Observatory Platform umbrella - including adopting the data dashboard – will significantly strengthen the impact of the KAOP. This will include gendered outreach strategies for the advisories.

    Technical training at KMD will improve upstream climate data, subsequently improving data as inputs for climate advisories. For year-end reporting, deliverables will be added about the Data Dashboard, capacity building, and advisory development and dissemination, including gendered targeting.

“For us to crunch data of the scale that we have at Kenya Meteorological Department, we need good hardware, and this is exactly what (AICCRA) has done; they have filled our data processing gap.”

Onesmus Ruirie, Assistant Director, Data Management Services, KMD (Read more)


AICCRA Kenya is led by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) in collaboration with:

  • The Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT
  • International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI)
  • International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT)

 

To learn more about AICCRA Kenya's activities, please contact:

Todd Crane, Country Coordinator - t.crane@cgiar.org

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