Our Project of the Month for January – Building Drought Resilience in Turkana


Turkana is an isolated ASAL (Arid and Semi-Arid Land) in Northern Kenya – the poorest region in the country. The people are mostly nomadic or semi-nomadic pastoralists, with a limited agricultural tradition. In the last 15 years, Turkana has suffered droughts of increasing intensity and frequency. These droughts have increased the range of the people’s search for pasture for their cattle, and impacted on the community’s ability to respond effectively through developing agriculture. Malnutrition is endemic, the region is at the early-winning stage for severe food shortage, and the population is poorly-prepared and vulnerable.

Aidlink is a small Dublin-based NGO which has worked in the area for 20 years. Their Drought Resilience programme targets a community early warning system, agricultural inputs and training, and irrigation equipment. Because the men are largely away with their cattle, women are seen as the prime resource in developing enterprise, microfinance, and agricultural knowledge.

Our funding of €10,074 in January 2016 will deliver the direct costs of this programme for one of the 5 communities targeted by Aidlink – and will hopefully make that community better-prepared for on-going climate change, and more resilient in the face of drought.

In September 2015, Aidlink’s Executive Director Anne Cleary visited one of the farms established as part of the pilot for this project. Below are some photos from her visit.



Figure 1: Solar – powered irrigation system. Josephat’s Farm, Turkana Kenya September 2015



Figure 2: Cabbage and Kale at Josephat’s farm Turkana Kenya September 2015



Figure 3 & Figure 1: Solar powered shallow well, Josephat’s Farm. Turkana, Kenya September 2015



Figure 4: Farmer Josephat, his wife Rose and their children, present Anne Cleary, Aidlink, with kale and cabbage from their farm. Turkana, Kenya September 2015