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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Monday, September 2, 2013

The Launching of Sokopepe at Sipili

The day that we had waited for so long finally came and it was celebrated with pomp and colour. The guest of honour was the Assistant Deputy County Commissioner of Laikipia County. Farmers were represented from all the 7 Maarifa centers in the Kenya namely Kyuso,Isinya, Nguruman, Mutomo, Ndhiwa, Marigat and of course the host Ng’arua. They had all carried samples of what they will market with the help of sokopepe.

Penina's poster

 I represented Isinya Maarifa center which is predominantly a pastoral region. I showcased my commodity of yoghurt made from milk from my cattle. The yoghurt is home-made and is a great way to fetch higher prices for our milk.
My visit to Ng’arua was very educative as I was able to learn a lot from the rest of the farmers representing other Maarifa centers and counties. I got to know their day to day activities and what farming practices and techniques they use to be successful in their farming.
Penina Tompo displays her beadwork
On the other hand, I was also able to teach on yoghurt making with most emphasis on boiling and cleanliness to ensure good hygiene and avoid illnesses caused by contaminated milk. There were a few people I met who had skills on how to make yoghurt who insisted that boiled milk could not bear good results. However, I changed their belief by displaying my home-made yoghurt whose milk had been boiled thoroughly to get rid of germs that may cause illnesses and cause danger to its consumers.
Way Forward
After the visit and launching of the platform, my eyes were opened on the great minefield we had been sitting on in form of the Isinya Maarifa center. I have therefore purposed to ensure that the entire Kajiado County is aware of the center and use maximally for their benefit. This is because some people have taken too long to realize the knowledge within the center and have not made enough use of it, to wake up and own it. These are mostly marginalized women, the youth and other disadvantaged groups.
I will continue working with the women’s groups that we network so that they can all benefit from this project of yoghurt making. This project will help groups generate income from their milk who have nowhere to sell their milk especially during the rainy season. They often sell the milk at very low prices which is very demoralizing.
I will work together with the other representatives of the counties where ALIN is represented by Maarifa centers so that together with them, we shall form the Transmedia County Forum. We hope that this group will unite us and give us a platform to share and highlight challenges that we are facing in our daily activities.
My expectations
I expect to continue learning problem solving techniques for use in group situations as we mostly work in groups.
I hope to continue sharing experiences from farmers in my county and in other counties too.
I look forward to to continue how to be an effective leader so as to be more effective in my group.
I expect to learn how to work in a team and achieve maximum results
I look ahead to to learn how to best reach those who live in the interiors and assist them better their livelihoods
I hope to learn how to encourage one another as farmers and disadvantaged groups
I look forward to learn how to identify other new networks that will assist us in improving our livelihoods.
I look ahead to best learn from the success and failures of other groups and other farmers around the county and country at large.

Thanks to ALIN for this chance and the exposure. I shall be a role model to my fellow farmers I Isinya and will use sokopepe the best I can to market my milk and that of others.

By Penina Tompo- Farmer, Isinya