By Lorraine Anyango
The Kisumu County Agri-Nutrition Implementation Strategy (CANIS) 2023- 2027 has been finalized and is ready for launch.
CANIS 2023-2027, emphasizes and focuses on increased productivity, irrigation, expansion as well as expanded markets.
The County Executive Member (CECM) Agriculture Fisheries, Livestock Development, and Irrigation, Mr Kenneth Onyango received a dummy for the document from Mrs Mildred Irungu of USAID Kenya.
Mrs. Irungu was accompanied by Mr. Kennedy Onchuru from USAID East Africa and Ms. Joyce Nyaboga of USAID’s Advancing Nutrition Capacity Strengthening Advisor.
He also received copies of the CANIS document for the other CECMs for cabinet approval ahead of the launch of the strategy scheduled for 25th May 2023.
Mrs. Irungu appreciated the collaboration and ownership from Kisumu County towards the USAID projects that are being implemented in the region.
Through ‘Advancing Nutrition’ Kisumu County was able to set up a Multi-Sectoral Nutrition (MSN) coordination platform which has aided joint work plans and a score that is already availing positive changes.
The agriculture department had several indicators to eradicate malnutrition and increase both food and nutrition security, one was availing human resources.
During the siting, Mr. Onyango Announced that the department has received a node to employ 101 extension officers who will be sensitizing farmers as well as educating residents of Kisumu.
He said that Agricultural extension work has been dormant as many have retired and the county has not employed new officers for many years.
The CANIS will guide the rearranging and coordinating of key state and non-state actors to achieve accelerated benefit from all.
The USAID team also held talks with Maseno University which have drafted a curriculum to fill skills gaps in nutrition-sensitive as most of the current programs are skewed to clinical nutrition.
The drafted Bachelor of Science Food and Nutrition Security with IT curriculum with support from USAID Advancing Nutrition will appreciate the real nutrition challenges in the communities.
The inputs of this new curriculum included those of members of the Kisumu County MSN platforms, as well as extensive consultation with the National Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) and Kenya School of Agriculture.
The drafted curriculum is scheduled to submit to the university senate and commission of the university for approval.
The team discussed partnership towards implementation of short courses in nutrition-sensitive and in research and innovation once the curriculum is done.
The team also discussed the need for outsourcing specialists from across the board to appreciate the current status of nutrition to the lectures.
They had conversations to see to it that the mandatory internship for nutritionists has a stipend as well as the need to map potential employers for attachment and internship for the graduates from this program.
The team also visited Kamsa Poultry farm, whose proprietor Mr Steve Sande the Chair of Scaling Up Nutrition Business Network provided a highlight of his business established in 2014 that focuses on the poultry value chain.
The SBN Kisumu Chapter was launched in November 2022 with support from USAID Advancing Nutrition and Gain.
The chapter has 15 members so far who are in the nutrition and food systems value chain. A sensitization on business registration was conducted with support from USAID Advancing Nutrition collaboratively with the Kisumu County Department of Trade.