Kabarnet Gardens
Off Ngong Road
Monday - Friday
0900 - 1700

Scaling up ISFM systems in Western Kenya to enhance Smallholder Incomes and Food Security and Nutrition

Major events so far…

Staff orientation and planning meetings

The project kicked off by holding internal meetings geared towards staff orientation, to reflect and deliberate on the project implementation strategies. This was followed by the field officers reaching out to communities, making partnership links with Provincial Administration, Ministry of Agriculture and other Non-state actors within the project site.

ISFM consultative meeting in Nairobi between AGRA and ROP
ISFM consultative meeting in Nairobi between AGRA and ROP

Baseline Survey

Baseline survey was successfully carried out and data entry, analysis and interpretation were finalized. This was preceded by the design of the study methodology, development of data collection tools, pre-testing of tools, training of enumerators and actual field work. In total, 670 farmers were interviewed across the six targeted clusters i.e. Vihiga, Sabatia, Hamisi, Lurambi, Emuhaya and Butere.

An enumerator interviews a farmer in Hamisi cluster

Establishing demo plots and Training of Trainers (ToT)

Setting up of demo plots was done with the guidance of the Ministry of Agriculture. The demonstration plots are group-based, and not run by individual farmers. In the first season, there were five demonstration plots per sub-location in Vihiga, Sabatia, Hamisi, Emuhaya, Lurambi clusters while Butere had six (Totaling 155). In the second season, 10 mother demo plots have been established in each of the six clusters (Totaling 60), and the rest (95) have been retained as baby demos.

Men too working alongside their women in planting legumes and cereals on their farms
A ROP staff member Ms. Violet explaining to Dr.Hawara of AGRA and ROP’s Prof. Oniang’o how a farmers’ group plot had been demarcated in the presence of the members
Proper agronomic practices like spacing were strictly adhered to, with farmers using a string and a ruler as seen here
A maize pure stand demo plot in Vihiga cluster
Group members inspecting a soybean pure stand demo plot in Hamisi

Farmer information centre

A Farmer Information Centre has been set up at the field’s head office in Mbale. Infonet–Biovision has already trained one ROP staff on farmer information management, and continues to offer seminars to some of ROP’s staff. Farmers are now accessing current bulletins on ISFM through this information centre, with the assistance of Mr. Thomas Mutuli.

Soil Sampling and analysis

Soil samples from the entire155 demo plots were collected and analyzed, with a revelation that most of them were acidic, with pH ranging from 3 to 5. Expert opinion was thus given that farmers should use SSP Fertilizer and CAN in their demonstration plots.

Training of Model Farmers

Training was carried out in line with the project goals and objectives, primarily on scaling up and scaling out proven and innovative ISFM systems, all tailored towards enhancing smallholder incomes and Food security and Nutrition in Western Kenya.

A Ministry of Agriculture extention officer drives a point to TOTs during training at the Bukura ATC
Mr. Walter Munywere, an extension officer with MOA in Lurambi demonstrates to TOTs the right spacing between holes during planting at Bukura ATC
Farmers during seed selection training
Ms. Doris Anjawa, Field Coordinator ROP-AFRICA, demonstrates weighing fertilizer on a digital balance to other field staff. Looking on is Mr. Kiwia, AGRA’s Project Coordinator for Africa.

Stakeholders’ forums and field visits

ROP has been active in attending various stakeholders’ forums across the six clusters.

ROP’s field coordinator Ms. Doris Anjawa (2nd right) and Dr. Bashir of AGRA listens to an explanation from Mr. Obiero of ARDAP in a soybean demo plot

First season harvesting and data collection

Harvesting and data collection was done in all the clusters and fresh samples for cob and stover collected during harvesting were taken to KARI laboratories for determination of dry weight.

Mr. Kiwia takes some of ROP’s staff through demo plot demarcation exercise in Hamisi cluster
ROP officers plucking soybean pods during the harvesting of legumes in Emuhaya
Mr. Vincent Lwegado (foreground), leads other ROA staff in uprooting soybean from a demo plot
A farmer is assisted by her grandchildren to pluck soybean pods

Field day

A successful field day was organized by ROP in Emuhaya cluster on Mr. Leach Inyambuko’s farm, where various farmer groups and individual farmers showcased various farming techniques and harvests.

Hon. Prof. Ruth Oniang’o, Founder and Director of ROP-AFRICA, is welcomed at Mr. Leach Inyambukho’s farm by the area sub-chief in Esirabe, Emuhaya cluster
Mr. George Ludo, the District Officer, Emuhaya sub-county, and Prof. Oniang’o are given some presents by a representative from one of the groups in Emuhaya cluster. Looking on is Ms. Doris Anjawa