In February 2020, we updated you on Ace Africa’s progress with their tree planting project in Siaya County, Kenya after receiving their Scott Bader Commonwealth Grant in May 2019. We are delighted to say the project has now been completed!
Across Kenya there are up to 14.5 million people who do not have access to regular and reliable sources of nutrition. In Siaya County, around 20% of the population fall into the category of being food insecure and often miss out on three healthy meals a day. Children are particularly affected by malnutrition, which can lead to stunted growth and development, and affect their ability to participate and learn well in school.
Since February, Ace Africa have established fruit tree nurseries at a further 12 schools, achieving their overall target of establishing fruit tree nurseries at 20 primary schools in Siaya County.
The project was implemented through the Child to Child (CtC) health clubs to ensure continuity of skills from one child to another and to the community. Over the course of 12 months Ace Africa’s project achieved the following:
- Delivered a 3-day training course for 40 teachers on fruit tree planting and management, which was then passed on to 1,323 Child to Child Club members in the 20 schools involved.
- Procured, distributed, and planted 1,400 grafted seedlings of mango (400), papaya (600) and avocado (400), at 70 seedlings per school. Whilst some seedlings were eaten by animals, there was an overall germination rate of 70%.
- 3 schools were also able to start papaya fruit tree nursery beds and the seedlings were distributed to 124 children to plant in their homes.
- Nutritious local vegetables planted alongside the trees have been successfully harvested 3 times, to provide food for 546 vulnerable children at home.
- Hand-washing and hygiene education was carried out in all 20 primary schools for the benefit of 1,746 children. The children developed poems, posters and songs to share their learning with 3,067 fellow pupils. 4 schools were also supported to take part in events on World Food Day and Global Hand-washing Day.
- 76 hand-washing stations have been installed to increase hygiene and 546 children reported setting up similar models at home.
The project also reached 1,825 community members with hygiene messages through advocacy days and a total of 3,067 children within schools who learned from their peers.
In total Ace Africa planted 2,000 fruit trees and educated 3,389 children on fruit tree management, nutrition, and food hygiene.
Ace Africa continues to support the 20 schools in this final project phase; representatives from the Ministry of Education and Agriculture will continue to monitor the trees and provide support. Other interested schools have been linked with tree nurseries to grow their farms and a WhatsApp group has been formed to link teachers to share experiences and learning.
We are delighted to see the fruit tree planting project completed and helping the community in Siaya County, Kenya for many years to come. A big thank you to Ace Africa for their hard work and dedication to completing this project and ensuring their Scott Bader Commonwealth grant makes a positive difference!