German minisster visited Lokichoggio
“We see that the authorities have taken over ownership (of drought mitigating activities) and try to manage changing systems to be better prepared” Dirk Niebel. German Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development.
The minister accompanied by the German ambassador and minister of state for development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands Mohamed Elmi were on a tour of Lokichogio in Turkana County to witness on-going interventions in health and agriculture after the drought that ravaged countries in the Horn of Africa last year.
The minister visited various projects supported by the German Development Cooperation including, health outreaches with activities such as immunizations of children, screening of malnutrition, HIV testing counseling and treatment; food distribution projects and agricultural activities that promote food security in the region.
The minister’s last visit to Kenya was in August where he reaffirmed Germany’s financial commitment to help countries in the Horn of Africa including the Kenyan government fight drought in the North-eastern region of the country. Kenya received more than 7 billion shillings to provide support for the local communities.
“We made available more than 160 million euros (to the Horn of Africa) for quick and uncomplicated assistance and also for efforts to help build long-term structures. Only in that way can we help people become more resilient against future drought. Through my visit, I want to get a first-hand impression of the progress made and also of the remaining challenges for our work against the drought.”
Since then, the Kenyan – German Drought Response Programme has in partnership with the Ministries of health and other partners carried out various activities to mitigate the effects of the drought. This interventions include; improving sanitation and hygiene in the drought affected areas, strengthening capacity of the various health facilities in the area, nutrition support and healthcare services, infrastructural support, capacity building in the areas of Gender Based Violence, sexual and reproductive and maternal child health among others.
In carrying out its interventions, the Programme does not only focus on short-term measures, but endeavors to build resilience for future emergencies in the target areas.