Kuria West District Before Nuru
Before Nuru arrived, local farmers had very low maize (corn) yields resulting in a hunger season between harvests. There were very few clean water sources and waterborne disease was rampant. The health facilities were desperately lacking resources, and malaria, diarrhea and upper-respiratory tract infections plagued the local population. School drop out rates were high, especially for girls, and few parents could afford to send their children to secondary school. There was no bank in the community, no business training, and no access to capital for investment.
Kuria West District With Nuru
When Nuru arrived we met with local officials and village elders, listened to their needs and ideas for solutions. Next we hit the streets (or dirt roads) visiting farmers in their fields, mud-walled homes, and at water collection points to gather vital information needed to establish a baseline for our measurement and evaluation system. When we held our group formation meeting 450 farmers showed up to join Nuru (we had expected 150). These farmers were put into groups, trained in effective farming techniques, and provided a loan of maize seed and fertilizer. Nuru Groups planted, weeded, and harvested their crops together, and the average maize yield increased by 123%. Farmers repaid their loans, kept enough maize to feed their families, and sold the rest at a profit. Nuru trained the community in financial planning, taught life saving sanitation and healthcare techniques, and provided teacher training for area teachers.
The number of Nuru farmers nearly doubled in Q1 to 5,518, up from 2,783 the season before. This increase reflects Nuru Kenya's expansion into 18 sublocations. Agriculture inputs loaned to these farmers for the 2013 long rains season amounted to Ksh 48,952,600 (approximately $585,000). CED's group savings program (Mwak) maintained its 100% repayment rate for the third quarter in a row, and Healthcare's Households Reached by Field Officer Tailored Interpersonal Communications maintained at 1,495. Education expanded the number of schools involved in its outreach program to 12, impacting 4,192 students (this number is being checked against Ministry of Education numbers). Finally, Leadership trained 43 Nuru Staff in Basic Nuru Leadership Training, M&E launched the database for tracking Agriculture and CED using Salesforce, and Nuru Social Enterprises continues to work towards financial sustainability.
We continue to near proof of concept (projected in 2016) and invite you join us in the fight to end extreme poverty in remote rural areas, in our lifetime.