Vétérinaires Sans Frontières (VSF) Belgium is an international non-profit organization working with disadvantaged communities to increase their standard of living and improve food security through improved animal health and animal production in East Africa.
Vétérinaires Sans Frontières (VSF) Belgium - Food Facility Project has been funded by EC through Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nation (FAO) with an overall aim of enhancing livestock production and food security for at least 20,000 persons through a sustained boost in forage resources in selected programme areas of greater Turkana and greater Garissa.
The overall goal is to ensure targeted pastoral and agro-pastoral communities strengthen resilience to external shocks and pressures such as climatic change and volatility in essential food and non-food items.
This short consultancy assignment specifically aims at conducting a rapid assessment on fodder production in targeted areas along the Turkwel and Kerio rivers in Turkana, in order to provide baseline information for the implementation of Food Facility Project - Fodder Production with Pastoralist Field School groups (PFS) in Turkana and Garissa.
Emphasis will be given to local plant genetic resources and biodiversity and local expertise and knowledge in line with the PFS principles and practice. In terms of production low cost systems and technologies should be prioritized in terms of ground preparation, canal irrigation, enclosures, broadcasting/reseedings, harvesting and storage or bulking.
The integrated rapid assessment will:-
(a) aid the selection of fodder and browse species in the target area recognizing ecological differences and agronomic requirements
(b) contribute to sound production, harvesting/bulking and storage interventions through Pastoralist Field Schools
(c) explore and present key market and enterprise options around fodder production/bulking/utilization.
Other components will include testing of chemical properties of water and soils in the potential production sites and assessment on tillage options including donkey tillage.
The assignment requires site visits, focus group discussions with PFS, review of secondary literature from National Museums of Kenya, Kenya Agriculture Research Institute (KARI), Arid Lands Resource Management Project (ALRMP) Livestock Production Offices and other relevant institutions, testing of soil and water properties, knowledge and experiences on livestock fodder production in arid areas with local organized groups is essential.
The rapid assessment will take place in the Turkwel and Kerio riverine areas of Turkana districts. The geographic targets areas include; Kainuk, Loypat - Katilu, Naipa, Lopur, Nakwamuru, Kapelbok, Kaptir in Turkana South, Turkwel and Loima in Turkana Central and Lokori in Turkana East. Other locations may be added.
- Prepare a detailed work plan for the assignment which outlines the participatory methodology to be used with resource persons drawn from the relevant PFS, communities etc;
- Undertake secondary review and documentation of previous pasture/fodder and browse rehabilitation projects along Turkwel and Kerio river;
- Conduct range biodiversity assessment in the target project areas; assessment to include identification of species and sites, existing fodder production technologies, harvesting methods and storage options;
- Conduct fodder marketing and enterprise development assessment
- Undertake group discussions with communities’ local administrations, PFS facilitators, Village Land Use Planning Committees, VSF staff, DLPO and other key livestock stakeholders in Turkana.
- Develop simple local fodder species herbarium to be in the PFS trainings/ botanical identification in consultation with NMK and Kari
- Test chemical properties of water and soil in selected sites to be used for fodder production;
- Submit a draft rapid assessment report for review
- Assessment report/maps with reference to geography, landscape, soil composition, demographic information on human and livestock, economic activities
- Nature and diversity of ecosystem documented per key location and PFS if appropriate - flora and fauna, species inventory with GPS readings for key niche production areas and those with high biodiversity values
- Production through conservation and utilization plan
- Analysis and plan for marketing and enterprise development engaging PFS, Village Banking (VICOBA) and link to a ‘hub’
- Lesson-learning pamphlet - historical timeline of pasture and fodder production along the Turkwel and Kerio riverine areas, the successes and failures of the activities
- Recommendations which include, potential areas for fodder and fodder production, types of fodder and pasture that could do well, other agro-pastoral activities recommended along the riverine areas.
- A plan for testing the different technologies/watering regimes etc
- The possible impacts of fodder and pasture production will be assessed in terms of socio-economic, ecological, economic and peace dynamic and provide recommendations where appropriate for the short- and long-term
The entire assignment is not expected to take more than 15 days. The field work will be completed by December 17th 2009 and the final report by 12th January 2010.
The consultant should:
- Have practical knowledge and prior experience on fodder species identification, production, harvesting and storage with the pastoral communities in the Horn of Africa
- Have demonstrated experience of working with traditional irrigation canals in the ASALs;
- Have in-depth understanding on fodder plants taxonomy, low cost fodder production technologies, water/soil testing techniques and fodder marketing;
- Individual expert(s) or professionals from research institutions i.e. KARI, ILRI, World Agroforestry Centre, universities or other private institutions are encouraged to apply.
Interested expert(s) should submit proposals indicating relevant qualifications and experience as well as a detailed execution plan. They should also indicate daily consultancy rates.
The proposals, CV, letter of interest and three (3) referees to vouch for competence in this consultancy should be sent electronically to recruitment @ vsfb.or.ke.
Closing date: 04th December 2009