In a landmark initiative, the Association of Women in Agriculture Kenya (AWAK) has partnered with the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) to implement the Accelerating Impacts of CGIAR Climate Research for Africa (AICCRA) project, generously funded by the World Bank. This dynamic collaboration is set to revolutionize agriculture in the semi-arid regions of Kenya.

For three intensive days, we found ourselves nestled in the heart of Taita Taveta County, engaged in a Training of Trainers (TOTs) program. This comprehensive training covered a spectrum of critical topics, ranging from Drought Tolerant Crops (DTCs) to Conservation Agriculture, Post Harvest Management, and the profound gender impacts on climate change.

Day 1: With expert guidance from ICRISAT, we delved into the meticulous art of managing cereal and legume crops. The pivotal subject of Seed Production was also explored. AWAK took the reins to shed light on Gender and Climate Change, spotlighting the inequalities that arise from the harsh realities of climate shifts, affecting men, women, and children in unique ways.

Day 2: Conservation Agriculture emerged as the beacon of hope for semi-arid regions, a CSA technique endorsed by ICRISAT. Post Harvest Management took center stage, emphasizing its pivotal role in bolstering food security and nutrition. AWAK assumed its role in examining the impact of climate change on unpaid care work, striving to implement strategies that alleviate its burden. Gender mainstreaming in post-harvest management was also championed, emphasizing the need to equip women with technology to reduce food loss and waste.

Voi, with its scenic vistas, proved to be an ideal backdrop for our endeavors. The TOTs training in Taita Taveta County concluded triumphantly, leaving the participants equipped with invaluable knowledge and skills.

As a culmination, a hands-on session at the Coast Institute of Technology illuminated the application of the 3.4.5 technique, ensuring optimal spacing for DTCs during planting. Essential insights on post-harvest storage techniques and moisture level assessment were also imparted.

In the weeks ahead, participants will receive improved DTCs from ICRISAT, ready to be sowed as the rainy season approaches. The impact of this partnership promises to be transformative, ushering in a new era of climate-resilient agriculture in Taita Taveta County.

Together, AWAK and ICRISAT are not just sowing seeds; they are sowing hope, knowledge, and a future of sustainable agriculture.

#ClimateSmartAgriculture #DroughtTolerantPlants #FoodSecurity

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