Ruben Centre became an operation partner with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in 2018. FAO recognized our Urban Farming concept as a cutting edge approach to the issue of Food security in Urban environments. So late in 2018 a second agreement was reached.
LETTER OF AGREEMENT BETWEEN:
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (“FAO”) under the Regional Development and Protection Programme in Kenya: Support to the Kalobeyei Development Programme (RDPP-KISEDP) – UNJP/KEN/086/EC and Christian Brothers – Ruben Centre Mukuru Kwa Ruben
For provision of “Technical support in establishment of innovative kitchen gardens and community training in Kalobeyei Refugee Settlement and it environs”
The Agreement will enter into force upon the date of signature by the Service Provider, by FAO or on 1st October 2018 and will terminate on 31st March 2019
The history of Kalobeyei Settlement:
Following a continuous influx of South Sudanese refugees, after renewed conflict broke out in South Sudan in December 2013, UNHCR requested the allocation of additional land for the expansion of the Kakuma Refugee Camp, further to several previous requests that had already been sent to the Ministry of Interior and National Coordination, occasioned by the need to decongest the Kakuma camp, which was (by June 2015) hosting a population of 183,000 individuals, as compared to the capacity of 70,000 that it was designed for.
In June 2015, the Turkana County Government, at the request of the Central Government, allocated a site near the Kalobeyei Township, situated about 40km northwest of Kakuma, and measuring 15 square kilometres.
During the World Refugee Day commemoration held in Kakuma on 20 June 2015, the land was officially handed over by the County Government and people of Turkana.
A New Approach Is Needed that understands that this Situation is not going to be a tempory one.
The ongoing care and maintenance programme, which was based on the assumption that the refugee situation is temporary, focuses on providing refugees with basic humanitarian assistance, including free food, non-food items and basic services. With the displacement situation ongoing for over two decades, the current form of aid is not tailored to the needs, situation and prospects of refugees and host communities. The economic potential of the camp has not been fully utilized and the host community, which is one of the most marginalized in Kenya, feels that it has not benefited much from the presence of refugees.
At the November 2014 Turkana Roundtable on the Integration of Refugees and Host Community Economies – an event opened by the Governor of Turkana County, Mr. Josphat Nanok – there was a clear consensus on the need for a different approach to refugee assistance programming in the county, to avoid a situation similar to the economic collapse that followed the repatriation of Sudanese refugees in 2005.
UNHCR and the Ministry of Interior and Coordination of National Government agreed with the Turkana County Government to develop a settlement that would promote the self-reliance of refugees and host communities by providing them with better livelihood opportunities and enhanced service delivery. In collaboration with the World Bank, UNHCR developed the Kalobeyei Integrated Social and Economic Development Programme (KISEDP), a multi-agency collaboration to develop the local economy and service delivery at Kalobeyei.
This represents a major paradigm shift. The overall objective of this initiative is to re-orient the refugee assistance program to contribute to improvement of the socio-economic conditions of the refugees and host communities, better prepare the host community to take advantage of emerging economic opportunities in upcoming extraction and potential irrigation-fed agriculture and reduce over-dependence on humanitarian aid and support the refugees to achieve durable solutions.
So enter Ruben Centre As The Service Provider with its Urban Farming approach.
a) The purpose for which the funds provided by FAO under this Agreement shall be used are the following:
(i) Objective. The Services will contribute to the following Organizational objective 2 (Make agriculture, forestry and fisheries more productive and sustainable) and 4 (Enable inclusive and efficient agricultural and food systems)
(ii) Outcome: Food and nutrition security of host and refugee communities of Kalobeyei and the wider Turkana County increased
(iii) Outputs: The Service Provider will contribute to the achievement of RDPP-KISEDP Activities 2.2 “Support to field schools activities for host and refugee communitities in Kalobeyei”and will produce, achieve or deliver the following outputs:
a. Output 1: Innovative kitchen gardening technologies introduced to Kalobeyei Refugee settlement and its environs
b. Output 2: Vegetable drying enterprises established in Kalobeyei Settlement
c. Output 3: Project activities effectively coordinated and monitored
(iv) Activities. The Service Provider will undertake the following activities:
Output 1: Innovative kitchen gardening technologies introduced to Kalobeyei Refugee settlement and its environs
1. Setting up Kitchen gardens in 4 primary schools in Kalobeyei Refugee settlement and surroundings using a Junior farmer field and life skills approach
2. Supporting 50 targeted refugees to establish wick vegetable gardens
3. Supporting 5 targeted host community groups to establish wick vegetable gardens
Output 2: Vegetable drying enterprises established in Kalobeyei Settlement
1. Train, mentor and coach one women group on the management of all aspects related to dried vegetables business (including setting up of vegetable solar drying structures, the complete vegetable drying and preservation process and bussiness aspects of running a dried vegetable enterprise)
Output 3: Project activities effectively coordinated and monitored
1. Two monitoring visits done by senior management to project sites
Integration of the visitors is key
Key characteristics are sustainable urban and agricultural/livestock development for the host community (estimated population of 20,000) and refugees (estimated population of 60,000), non-discriminatory services for both, avoidance of parallel service delivery and private sector involvement.
The site is to be developed as an urban centre, using the same development and planning techniques, developers, assessments etc. as for cities, in collaboration with the WBG (master plans, community engagement, sustainability etc.). Conceptual framework for the development is the Local Economic Development (LED) approach, to facilitate collaboration between public, business and non-governmental sector partners to create better conditions for economic growth and employment generation in Kalobeyei.
Both refugees and host communities will benefit from: (a) investments in basic infrastructure and access to social services; and (b) increased opportunities for supporting income generating activities. The Program will include features to promote community participation and ownership. Refugee and host communities will play an increased role in prioritizing needs, identifying service delivery and livelihoods interventions, and in monitoring the implementation of projects. The increased community voice and role in budget decision-making, design and implementation of development interventions will support social accountability and could contribute to improved social cohesion between refugees and host communities.
Details of Activities To Impact on both host community and the refugees.
Activity 1.1: Setting up Kitchen gardens in 4 primary schools in Kalobeyei Refugee settlement and surroundings
Activity 1.2: Supporting 50 targeted refugees to establish wick vegetable gardens
Activity 1.3: Supporting 5 targeted host community groups to establish wick vegetable gardens
Activity 2.1: Train, mentor and coach one women group on the management of all aspects related to dried vegetables business
Activity 3.1: Two monitoring visits done by senior management to project sites
Details of Funding
The program running for approximately six months during 2019 will be have KES 2,974,000/- shillings to work with.