Kenya Hope for Tomorrow


Kenya, a country five times the size of Ohio, is located in Eastern Africa and is bordered by Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, and the Indian Ocean. Known for being one of the most successful agricultural regions in Africa, Kenya has allocated over 41 percent of their land for agricultural uses. This focus on agriculture has led to recent economic growth, that coupled with a stable democratic government, has lifted millions of Kenyan citizens from extreme poverty. However, despite this recent economic growth, many regions of the country still lack the resources needed to improve overall welfare.

Living circumstances taken for granted in many other countries are now becoming realities for the Kenyan people. In addition to making clean water more accessible, doTERRA has helped bring other seemingly simple yet important projects to completion. This includes installing bathrooms with locking doors, and a community center that can be used for social events and farming education. doTERRA also held a Days for Girls training, using kits assembled by Wellness Advocates during the 2017 doTERRA convention. The first Days for Men was taught as well, focusing on educating young men about their maturing bodies and teaching them to respect women.

 
In cooperation with its sourcing partners, doTERRA is doing far more than just paying farmers for their crops. Each farmer who partners with doTERRA is entered into a database with GPS coordinates for their fields. The database also contains notes and information on their crops. Field officers travel to each farmer by motorcycle to gather this information, while also providing education on topics like crop protection, planting, and harvesting. Each farmer is also able to send and receive SMS messages to field officers for real-time feedback and answers to any questions they may have. This database and system are part of the doTERRA Co-Impact Sourcing initiative, which is designed to enable each small farmer to succeed.
 
doTERRA has found that a blend of small-scale farmers in addition to commercial farming results in a supply chain that delivers the required product volume while also enabling Co-Impact Sourcing initiatives to truly flourish. Lunga Lunga is a 300-acre commercial ginger farm that stands as a model for training individual farmers. Small-scale farmers are able to observe how ginger is successfully produced, and they can then take these best practices to their own farms. With three distilleries and a rich agricultural sector, Kenya has promising potential to source many more oils to doTERRA in the future.
 

“We’re very excited about all the possibilities that will soon become realities in Kenya! We are literally creating an identity for the Kenyan people and giving them a hope for tomorrow that they never thought possible. This is how we break the cycle of poverty and raise nations through our Co-Impact Sourcing efforts.” —Emily Wright

 

The Forgotten People

The coast of Kenya is incredibly beautiful, which has led many wealthy officials in the city of Nairobi to buy large portions of land on the coast. However, as the country is still developing its property rights laws, people in this area fear their land could be taken at any time by wealthy officials. These native people who reside on the coast of Kenya are often called the “forgotten people”; many do not have official records with the government. While they have lived on their land for generations, they may not have official, legal ownership of their property.

 
Because of these circumstances, it has proved difficult for doTERRA and its partners to invest in Kenyan farmers with long-term crops, such as Eucalyptus radiata and others that will take three to five years to fully mature. These coastal farmers risk being legally forced off the land at any time. Finding farmers who can produce a clean title to their property or a certified lease has been challenging.

A Brighter Future

To assist these farmers and to secure lasting partnerships in the area, doTERRA is in the process of helping Kenyan farmers acquire bank accounts, land, and recognition from the government. doTERRA has purchased large amounts of land, which is then subleased to farmers for a period of time. The farmer grows crops on the leased land as a training and savings exercise. doTERRA holds a portion of the farmer’s harvest payment each year on the farmer’s behalf; once the farmer has successfully grown aromatic crops on land doTERRA has leased to them for three to four years, they will have obtained enough money to purchase their own land.

 
During this process, doTERRA plans to create bank accounts for these farmers and help them become recognised citizens of Kenya. As more farmers acquire clean property ownership and titles, they open the doors to long-term partnerships with doTERRA. Creating stability and true economic growth in these regions is our mission. If you want to lift a nation, the people must be empowered.
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