Sometimes, you just need a little push from outside to realize your full potential. This is the case for Miangeni Commercial Village (CV), one among several villages that World Vision Kenya (WVK) and Farm Concern International (FCI) have partnered with under the Semi- Arid Commercialization Programme.
The main objective of the partnership was to improve the livelihood of farmers through increased production, adoption of new farming technologies and market linkages.
Miangeni Commercial Village is located in Eastern Kenya and has a great potential because of River Athi proximity. However, the Commercial Village had never fully utilized the water resource in the River until World Vision and FCI introduced green houses for commercialization of tomatoes and other vegetables.
The commercial village was encouraged to increase production of vegetables and other crops outside the green houses since water is available throughout the year.
In June 2013, Miangeni Commercial Village through market linkages by FCI sold green grams worth Ksh 77, 422 (USD. 910). According to Madam Virginia, the CV chairperson, farmers over the past years had been discouraged by brokers who were preying on the smallholders by buying produce at very low prices.
The chairperson emphasized that the move by World Vision and FCI was not only timely but God given thus wished that the partnership continued forever. The chairperson confessed that the price variation was very commendable and farmers promised to work harder to increase quantities of the desired varieties in the market. Madam Virginia said that the broker on the ground was buying green grams at Ksh 50 but the trader linked by FCI bought at Ksh 60. The trader also bought the N26 green gram variety at Ksh 47 whereas the broker was buying at Ksh 40 leading to reduced income to the farmers.
The future of Miangeni community remains bright since World Vision and FCI have linked all farmers to better markets for improved livelihoods and reduced poverty.
FCI VISION : To have commercialized smallholder communities with increased incomes for improved, stabilized & sustainable livelihoods in Africa and beyond