Joshua sitting next to the family's crops

No longer hungry despite years of drought

Joshua’s family are now food secure and face a brighter future.

Thank you for giving hope

Nine-year-old Joshua and his parents, Jeniffer and Josphat, know only too well the anguish and suffering that come with prolonged droughts. 

The family live in a predominantly dry area of eastern Kenya and have battled with unending droughts over the past three years, which has caused the death of livestock and crop failures. This has driven families into poverty as agriculture is the main source of livelihood and income for the majority of the community. 

“There are days, during periods of drought, when all we had was watery porridge that we relied on for breakfast, lunch and supper. Other days, we had nothing and we would all sleep hungry,” says Jeniffer.  

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Benedita Francisco

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Mozambique
Girl 12 years old

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“When the drought strikes, many children here stay at home because they are too weak to study due to a lack of food and water. Parents also lack money to buy required school supplies for their children. So you can see the droughts are affecting the education performance of our children and therefore jeopardising their future,” recalls Josphat. 

For years, during the many sleepless nights the couple experienced with their stomachs growling due to hunger, they wondered how the situation would ever change. 

Jeniffer
"We asked God to end the drought and suffering. We prayed for wisdom..."

Jeniffer

Joshua's mum

Their prayers were answered when they were invited to undergo training on climate-smart agriculture techniques which help families to cope effectively with climate change and remain food secure in times of drought. Some of the techniques they learnt through the training included using varieties of drought resistant crops, integrated pest management and water harvesting during rainy seasons. 

Josphat's farm pond
Thanks to the training received on climate smart agriculture, Josphat created a farm pond which he now uses to irrigate his crops, even in times of drought.

After the training, Josphat immediately put into practice all he had learned and created a farm pond in which he could collect and store water. Having no money for labour, he was forced to dig it on his own, taking him almost a year. “This was an uphill task and during the hard times food was scarce, I was forced to take breaks as I lacked the energy to go on,” he says. 

All his hard work paid off and life began to change for the better in his family, as well as among neighbouring farmers that he mentors. He was able to capture storm water from the short rainy season in 2021, and with the pump provided by World Vision, was able to easily channel water from the pond to a long pipe which he uses for irrigation.  

Today, the family is able to enjoy a nutritious diet all year round, despite the drought, and even have enough crops to sell. With the income, Joshua now has everything he needs to go to school and is free to enjoy his learning. 

“Mummy cooks delicious food for me from the vegetables and tomatoes in our farm. I also eat a lot of fruit that she says will keep me healthy,” says Joshua. “Nowadays, there is something to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I’m able to sleep well and my stomach doesn’t hurt at night as a result of hunger. 

“School is fun, I have energy to play with my friends and I concentrate better in class because I eat and carry enough food to school. And when I’m feeling unwell, my parents usually have money to take me to hospital and buy me medicine,” he adds.  

Thanks to you, children like Joshua now have hope. Together, we’ll continue to provide the most vulnerable children in poorer communities with the essentials they need for a happier, healthier and brighter future.  

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