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Introducing vegetable farming solutions to Kayole widows in order to increase food production, generate income and improve their health

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Explain your project idea (2,000 characters)

The basic of the project is an aeroponic vegetable farming. Aeroponic farming is growing crops in a closed and semi closed environment by spraying their suspended roots and lower stem with a sprayed nutrient rich in water solution thus reducing the need for soil. The project is the more resilient to climate change, provide superior nutritional value and faster growth at limited cost of inputs. The project is an adaptable method to those who do not own or access land and would like to engage in farming mostly because it is an efficient way of growing vegetables in small spaces of 1 Meter squared to 12 Meters squared and indoors given the fact that residents in Kayole live in rented small single room with shared balcony, shared bathroom facilities and sink area. Due to the absence of soil or other growing mediums, the roots of the plant are able to fully breathe, ensuring maximum intake of nutrients and greater plant yields. The project targets widows and single women of Kayole. The project will provide widows with training, installation of aeroponic kits either vertical or horizontal according to the available space. This project aims to provide alternative food security to young widows with children and their household and also generate income when they sell their produce to the community.

Who are the beneficiaries? (1,000 characters)

Young widows lose their property to in-laws after death of a husband through an evil scheme orchestrated by male in-laws. Young widows are not well grounded in the society and they have no older sons to defend them accordingly from property grabbing. Grabbing and other socio-economic factors has left most widows penniless yet they are the ones to take care of their children. Desperate, these widows move to slums like Kayole to engage in casual demining jobs, petty trade and prostitution. The project targets young widows of ages 18- 45 who live in Kayole. They have unemployment, food insecurity and must fend for her children. This project will provide alternative income generation by aeroponic vegetable farming which equips these women with entrepreneurial skills in agribusiness, generation of income and securing food instead of them engaging in prostitution and begging for handout. As a family activity this faming system will bring families together and restore their dignit

How is your idea unique? (1,000 characters)

Aeroponics uses mist or nutrient solutions instead of water, so it doesn't require containers or trays to hold water. It is an effective and efficient way of growing plants for it requires little water and needs minimal space. Plants are fed through a fine mist of nutrient-rich, water-mix solution. Because the system is enclosed, the nutrient mix is fully recycled, leading to significant water savings. This method, therefore, is particularly suitable in water-scarce regions. An additional advantage of the aeroponic method is that it is free of fertilizers or pesticides hence improves the environmental well-being, food quality and subsequently the consumer’s health. Furthermore, research has revealed that this high-density planting method makes harvesting easier and provides higher yields. Unemployed widows renting living spaces continue to beg while depending on petty trade or prostitution to support their children. Aeroponics farming in our view is a good source of food and income

Idea Proposal Stage (choose one)

  • Initial Design: I am exploring the idea, gathering the inspiration and information I need to test it with real users.

Tell us more about your organization/company (1 sentence and website URL)

Young Widows Advancement Program (YWAP) a community based organization focused on assisting widows and orphans live long and prosperous lives through psychosocial, socio-legal and legal support in advancing their interests promoting their rights and generating public awareness on issues of property ownership, sexual and inheritance rights.

Expertise in sector

  • 7+ years

Organization Filing Status

  • Yes, we are a registered non-profit.

In 3-4 sentences, tell us the inspiration or story that encouraged you to start this project.

Rebecca Awiti wipes her tears when she narrates how her in-laws caused her and her 3 children to live a life of uncertainty not knowing where the next meal, rent and school fees will come from. After her husband’s death she moved to Kayole and now hikes a living doing odd jobs yet she has youth and physical strength for farming. Her story is similar to stories of other widows living in Kayole and environs with no regular incomes and source of food for the family. The aeroponic vegetable farming

Please explain how your selected topic areas are influenced, in the local context of your project (1,000 characters).

The project reduces, and possibly eliminates the use of fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides which have been causing environmental degradation by polluting surface water and groundwater. The fact that no soil is used in aeroponic farming eliminates the need for land hence there is no need for falling trees to create space for farming. The project encourages Indoor farming which is immune to weather changes that affects traditional farming by changing temperature, water supply, and photo intensity. These factors often reduce produce yield; for example, droughts and floods destroy crops every year in Kenya. As such, the aeroponic farm will be important for food security especially as climate change threatens our country. Further the project is likely to create new social networks and interactions in Kayole that forge new friendship among neighbors, farmers and consumers. The project will play important educational role in informing about plants produce, earn income and food security.

Who will work alongside your organization in the project idea? (1,000 characters)

Young Widows Advancement Program (YWAP) will work in collaboration with Hydroponics Kenya and the ministry of agriculture to train 200 widows from Kayole on aeroponic vegetable farming. Hydroponics Kenya will be responsible for installation and providing garden systems. The ministry of agriculture will be involved in conducting training on agribusiness, providing market for the farmers to sell their vegetables while YWAP project officers will be responsible for data collection, provide logistics, follow ups on the women households and report on each household’s progress.

Please share some of the top strengths identified in the community which your project will serve (500 characters)

Kayole is an ideal area for aeroponic farming with a dense estimated population 270,000 registered voters ( 2013 IEBC voter registry) , 43% are widows and single mothers. since land is very expensive in kenya, majority only dream of a means at which they can earn sustainable income through farming . Kenya women are hard workers with ready labor, with the willingness and eagerness to grow and improve their situation

Geographic Focus

The project will be based in Kayole, Nairobi Kenya

How many months are required for the project idea? (500 characters)

The project will take place within 24 months.

Did you submit this idea to our 2017 BridgeBuilder Challenge? (Y/N)

  • No

If Yes, how has project idea changed, grown, or evolved since last year? (2,000 characters)



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