RCMRD/SERVIR E&SA are forging a new collaboration with the 4-H Foundation Kenya and the GLOBE program. Representatives from the three organizations discussed each of their mandates and current and future projects where areas of congruence were identified and a way forward on the partnership was proposed.
The meeting explored the modalities of an RCMRD, Globe Kenya and the Four H Foundation (Kenya) 4-H partnership with activities like the RCMRD Space challenge where the GLOBE program is deploying automatic Weather Stations in schools like Moi Forces Academy in Nairobi.
Speaking about RCMRD’s role, Mubea listed the projects at RCMRD that include: SERVIR E&SA, MESA and AFREF and noted that since its establishment, the Center has been very instrumental in capacity building in resource survey, mapping, remote sensing, GIS and natural resources assessment and management in Eastern and Southern Africa.
He said the Centre has implemented numerous projects on behalf of its member States and development partners. He also talked about the RCMRD international space challenge that is a three year programme. This, he said, begun in April 2017 and will run till 2019. The challenge works with form one and two students. The project is jointly implemented with GLOBE Kenya. GLOBE and TAHMO will set up automatic weather station (AWS) at RCMRD. There will be two weather stations (AWS). This collaboration aims to establish around 200, 000 AWS around the world.
Charles Mwangi said GLOBE is a science and education program that connects a network of students, teachers and scientists from around the world to better understand, sustain and improve Earth’s environment at local, regional and global scales. By engaging students in hands-on learning of Earth system science, GLOBE is an innovative way for teachers to get students of all ages excited about scientific discovery locally and globally. He added that in the year 2012/2013, the Kenya National Space Secretariat (KNSS) adopted the GLOBE program as an outreach program to promote and sustain interest in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects.
Annie Nyaga representing 4-H Kenya said the Organisation was formed to compliment the efforts of government and individual schools that were trying to set up or maintain 4-K and young farmers’ clubs.
She said over the years, it remained a challenge to maintain youth interest in Agriculture and most of these clubs either died or struggled to survive. “As a foundation, our role is to support, build bridges and ensure that the schools and 4-H members have what they need in order to drive innovative and sustainable clubs. We build and maintain relationships and do not in any way, wish to commandeer or claim ownership over any of the clubs. Whatever assets we hold, we do so in trust for the real owners, the youth of Kenya, and that is our mandate.”
Nyaga added that 4-H members were currently in 20 Counties. 4H Kenya is currently looking to increase their presence in schools while also enriching the programme activities e.g. including weather stations due to this new partnership and agroforestry activities. The 4-H program is also in different parts of Africa.
The meeting at RCMRD had representatives from 4H including Anne Nyaga the Executive Director, Neema Mutemi the Partnerships & Programmes Director and Janet Mbula the Operations Manager as well as Charles Mwangi the Country Director for GLOBE and RCMRD staff including by Dr. Kenneth Mubea the Capacity Development Lead, Ing. Kenneth Kasera the User Engagement Lead and Dorah Nesoba the Communications and Outreach Lead.
Report by Dorah Nesoba