Kenyan private schools often have high operation costs, one of the reasons being that they purchase food from the market. Schools have land and labor, however they lack capital, farming knowledge, and are often unwilling to take the risk of failure.
CIS collaborates with local agricultural institutions to provide modern horticulture training to schools, such as sack gardening, grafting, or even hydroponics. We explain and demonstrate to schools how to use simple agricultural techniques to grow crop in small areas, and which types of seeds are best suited to their regions.
CIS supports our partner schools from start to end, from giving them access to suitable equipment to helping them systematically grow and eventually even sell the harvest after self-consumption. Our in-house training is tailored to school settings, and integrates different stakeholders such as students, parents and teachers. To date, our Sack Gardening Project has contributed to our partner schools’ disposable income and their students’
daily curriculum, while connecting neighboring communities.
- Pest management
- Record keeping
- Home-made organic fertilizer
CIS set its foot first in Homa Bay in 2017. We succeeded by building local connections through networking and going through a whole vetting and school assessment process. CIS first developed a sack gardening project for our partner school WKA, after noticing their empty backyard.
We began to scale-up our operation in Nairobi, after the successful pilot in Homa Bay in 2017. We made several adjustments after the evaluation of the pilot, including the establishment of a co-creation board comprising teachers, students, parents and CIS staff, helping to generate a win-win solution for both school and CIS.
We sent experts from Sweden to Kenya to conduct a co-creation workshop in July 2018. The aim was to generate a solution by combining local knowledge of school teachers/ parents and CIS’s professional consulting expertise. We expect more innovative and tailored proposals to be launched after the workshop.
In July 2018, Nakuru became the third city in Kenya where we set foot. Our new partner school is completely new to farming yet has the will to sustain financially.
We have introduced a loyalty program to better connect schools’ revenue with CIS’s mission, and to provide incentives for both parties to improve our work.