For those who can manage to have one, a kitchen garden has always come through for individuals and families. And in this time of COVID-19, a thriving kitchen garden will serve three purposes. Enable Kenyans to grown vegetables, fruits and herbs to enhance their immunity, make some much-needed savings, and reduce trips to the market.
Unfortunately, people have not always embraced these gardens for different reasons, some of them being lack of proper basic knowledge on how to start and maintain them. There are space saving technologies involved in making them worthwhile but not everyone has enough knowhow to venture into them. Like multi-storey gardens, cone garden, hanging gardens, micro-gardens (buckets, tyres, other containers), moist bed gardens, staircase garden, aquaphonics and food robe garden.
The National Business Compact on COVID- 19 has partnered with the Ministry of Agriculture to roll out the 1 Million Kitchen Garden Campaign to address some of these challenges. The campaign will be spearheaded by the Ministry Of Agriculture and the pilot phase of the campaign will begin with 15,000 farmers across 47 counties who will act as peer-educators who will educate community members on technologies to produce, prepare and preserve green leafy vegetables.
With or without COVID-19, agriculture is the mainstay of Kenya’s economy and its performance directly and indirectly affects Kenya’s overall economic growth. A hungry people is a people who do not have the energy to go around their day to day activities and build the nation and food security is therefore one of the top four priority areas in the Big Four agenda
Through the support of the Small Scale Irrigation and Value Addition Project, Makueni County will be the front runners of this campaign having the initial farmers who will be the peer-educators on simple technologies to produce, prepare and preserve green to the communities.
The implementation of this campaign will be supported by The National Agriculture and Rural Inclusive Growth Project (NARIGP),The Small Scale Irrigation and Value Addition Project (SIVAP) and The Kenya Climate Smart Agriculture Project (KCSAP). Other partners include the National Business Compact on COVID -19 (NBCC) through the Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition (AFN) work stream that will be complimenting the project by providing strategic communication on aspects of food availability, accessibility and proper nutrition following the COVID-19 Nutrition and Healthy Diets Guidelines to the public.
The National Business Compact on COVID-19, (NBCC) has mobilized a total of KES 80 Million that was used to support government efforts to combat the spread, effects and impact of COVID- 19 in Kenya. In addition to this, they have partnered with local media houses to sensitize and educate the public on hand washing, sanitizing and social distancing as a way of helping the government drive awareness and consumer education towards adopting pro-social behavior.