East Africa Drought Crisis

Jun 5, 2012

Working together!

Cecilia Mwangi
Cecilia Mwangi

Thank you for helping us assist people in East Africa to get back on their feet.

ActionAid, in partnership with the Government of Kenya and United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), introduced the Food for Asset (FFA) program. The program distributes food supplies to community members affected by the drought, who are not able to grow, or cannot afford, their own food. In exchange for staple foods, the community members work on projects that will build ‘assets’ and increase food security for their community. The FFA program has 28,760 beneficiaries in total and around one tenth of them, or 517 households, work at the Kambi Sheikh farm projects.

Cecilia Mwangi, 60 years old, lives in Kambi Sheikh, North Eastern, Isiolo, Kenya. Married, but husband has abandoned her. 6 children. She provides for one of her own children and 7 grandchildren.

“The climate has changed and it is not as easy to grow crops and vegetables as it used to be. Therefore, it is fantastic that ActionAid is supporting us with the Food For Assets project, where we are learning farming techniques that makes it possible for us to adapt to the dryer and harsher climate.” says Cecilia.

 “I work at the Food for Assets site 12 days a month. For me, the most important benefit is that I learn how to farm more effectively.”

“At the FFA site, I have learned how to dig trenches and how to use other techniques to maintain moist and fertile soil. Digging holes and filling them up with manure before we plant has been very successful. Before, I planted crops and they dried out on my own farm. Now I can grow crops even when the rain is not enough.”

“I managed to sow just before we got some rains 3 months ago. If it keeps improving, I believe that I will be able to cope without the relief food we receive at some point.”

“We are five different tribes at this site. We all work together, so this program also proves that we are all humans that can work together and laugh together. It doesn’t matter for us, which tribe we are coming from.”

“Borana, Somali, Turkana, Kikuyu and Meru are the tribes represented here. I can talk to everybody. Those who do not want peace are just thugs and they can come from any tribe. But they don’t belong in this site. That’s for sure.”

*Thank you so much for your support and please visit ActionAid USA website at www.actionaidusa.org to learn more about our work in East Africa and around the world.


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Project Leader

Amy Leichtman

Program Manager
Washington, DC United States

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