Miram Maria Mutunga

I Have Seen The Fruits of My Labour
Before my husband died, we had bought a piece of land just next to the Kwa-Nduthi part of Kivou River. The land was just bare with mangalata (gullies) and no vegetation. We could hardly grow any crop on the farm. With the little knowledge I had, my yield for the farm was so low, that I only sold KSh. 300 ($ 3) per week. That was not sufficient even for the meals for my children.

Luckily, November last year ADRA came and identified our group for agriculture training. Later, they constructed a sand-dam on the river next to my farm and trained our group, Tunza Punda self-help group, in water fed agriculture, vegetable farming, shamba-gunia (vertical bag gardens) and poultry keeping. I am using the new knowledge gained to farm better, control pests and irrigate using water from the sand dam. Now I earn over KSh. 3,500 ($ 35) per week from selling vegetables in my village and I have been able to employ two full time workers to help me in my farm. So far, I have managed to plant kales, spinach, tomatoes, green peppers, sorghum, pigeon peas, Amaranthus, maize, pawpaw, sugarcane, watermelons, onions, capsicum and bananas. This has been made possible through the training I received.

My group members have also embraced farming. I am happy that my model farm has inspired the group members to start their own farms. I am looking forward to the day our village will yield so much vegetables that we will supply to Mwingi town and beyond. Apart from my group members, some of my customers were interested in the techniques I use on my farm. So far, two of them are now vegetable farmers.

Nina muvea mwingi muno kwa ADRA. Nimunengete wikwatyo, nuu ula waisi kana no nithiwe muimi wa kuta mboga utuini muima? Ninonete mausyao ma uthukumi wakwa na maisha makwa nimethiitwe maseo muno. (I am so grateful to ADRA. You have given me hope, who knew I could be a farmer that supplies vegetables to a whole village? I have seen the fruits of my labour and my life has become better).

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