Earlier today, the Association of Women in Agriculture Kenya (AWAK) convened at the Ononoka in Mombasa County for an introductory meeting with leaders of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) groups. Led by the National Executive Chairlady, Dr. Judy Matu, the AWAK team had the privilege of joining Mr. Khamis Kurichwa, Chief Officer of the Department for Gender, Youth, and Social Services in Mombasa County, along with the county Directors for Gender and Youth.
The purpose of the meeting was to inaugurate a groundbreaking initiative aimed at fostering inclusive development within vulnerable households through AWAK’s Resilient Recovery program. Over the next eight weeks, AWAK plans to conduct comprehensive training sessions tailored specifically for 120 PWDs across Mombasa County. This initiative reflects AWAK’s commitment to leaving no one behind in their pursuit of sustainable agricultural practices and economic empowerment.
The training curriculum will cover a range of essential topics including Climate-Smart Urban Farming, Food Processing and Value Addition (including baking and briquette making), Business Development Skills, and Mental Wellness sessions. Notably, AWAK is taking proactive measures to ensure that the training sessions are fully accessible to all participants. This includes providing assisted services such as translators for the hearing impaired, guides for those requiring mobility assistance, and other specialized support options.
In a commendable display of inclusivity, AWAK announced plans to develop a Braille version of the training curriculum, enabling visually impaired participants to fully engage in the program and even become trainers themselves. Furthermore, AWAK will collaborate closely with technical officers from the Department of Agriculture to ensure that the urban farming and agribusiness training sessions are delivered with the highest level of expertise and relevance.
This initiative underscores the importance of inclusion in fostering sustainable development and addressing key challenges such as food security, affordable clean energy, and economic empowerment. By prioritizing the needs of PWDs and providing them with the necessary tools and resources, AWAK is not only enriching individual lives but also contributing to the overall well-being and resilience of communities in Mombasa County.
The launch of this program resonates with AWAK’s core values of empowerment, equality, and social justice. Through collaborative efforts and a steadfast commitment to inclusivity, AWAK aims to set a precedent for organizations nationwide, demonstrating that with determination and compassion, we can build a more inclusive and prosperous future for all.