There is a growing concern of the food security, nutrition and their impacts in health on most families in Kenya. There is a clear link between food security, nutrition and health. Communicable diseases brought on in part by malnutrition are responsible for millions of preventable deaths each year. Mass population movements can result in high rates of malnutrition, sickness and death. Shortage of food also makes people more vulnerable to sexual abuse and exploitation. Poor quality diets contribute to delayed childhood development, causing damage due to vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
As part of our mandate, ERMIS Africa has continued to empower communities on nutrition and health through various capacity building initiatives aimed at equipping them with the necessary information that will help them sustain their livelihoods and co-exist harmoniously with their environment without exerting pressure on the resources hence risk depleting them
Climate change is a growing crisis with its main impact being economic, health and safety, food production, security, and other dimensions not only in Kenya but in the entire world. For example, shifting weather patterns threaten food production through increased unpredictability of precipitation, rising sea levels contaminate coastal freshwater reserves and increase the risk of catastrophic flooding, and a warming atmosphere aids the pole-ward spread of pests and diseases once limited to the tropics.
ERMIS Africa through the Kenya Climate Challenge Programme for schools has also realized the importance of children’s participation in climate change and disaster risk reduction. ERMIS is currently implementing biodiversity conservation project within Mt. Kenya geared towards climate change mitigation.
ERMIS Africa is supporting the Ministry of Water and Irrigation, through a collaboration with SNV-Netherlands and Water Service Boards in various regions of the country to establish water coverage levels in rural areas through a project dubbed “Water Point Mapping” (WPM).
The project aimed at providing reliable data and information on water coverage especially in rural areas in order to bridge the information gaps that are currently characteristic of the rural water sub-sector. The WPM is a scale up from pilots conducted in West Pokot, Mbeere North and Kyuso districts in 2010 to include 8 counties i.e. Kisumu, Busia, Kiambu, Kajiado, Isiolo, Kwale, Turkana, and Embu, Counties in Kenya.
The Project utilizes Smart Phones Data Collection Techniques linked to a Cloud Server that allows the upload of data from the ground teams consisting of District Water officers and Public Health officers, WRMA officers, or NDMA officers depending on the regional context. The uploaded data is then downloaded for analysis and compilation into County Water Atlases that shows, inter alia, the location and type of water source, functionality status, water quality, ownership and maintenance and reasons for non-functionality where applicable. The data and information gathered is crucial for evidence and need based planning for water resource development and strategic targeting for optimal water resource use and maximum benefit/ impact on the target communities.
ERMIS Africa was contracted to carry out an environmental impact assessment for the establishment of a proposed eco-camping site at Iloro in the southern parts of Kakamega Forest. The proposed project is funded by USAID through ACT!”s Kenya Civil Societies Strengthening Programme and hosted by Muileshi CFA in collaboration with Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), Kenya Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI) and National Museums of Kenya (NMK).
The unique biodiversity of Kakamega forest is an important asset with multiple tourist attraction sites including panoramic landscapes, caves and flora and fauna. Potential exists in establishing nature trails/walks ,jeep tour, Climbing & trekking, Safari camps & guesthouses, animal transportation (Horses & Camels), geological sites, local cultures & traditions (Kalenjin and Kikuyu), handicrafts, artifacts, skin wears and birding.
Other activities that will be incorporated include conservation activities through a volunteer programme, cottage industry for guava juice extraction and waste recycling. The goal of the project is to restore the biodiversity and ecological functions of Kakamega Forest Ecosystem through community-led reforestation efforts by providing the local community with incentives for conservation and building the local community’s capacity in conservation.