DAIZU KIDS SOYA BEAN HARVESTING AND PREPARATION
ON DECEMBER 8th 2013
REPORT BY UNITED MISSION FOR THE NEEDY
The green empowerment project initiated by United Mission for the Needy and Japan Africa Trust embarked on improved nutrition of school going children. To this end, a soya bean project popularly known as “Daizu Kids” was started. In July 2013, UMN in collaboration with JAT participated in a joint planting session of soya beans in Kenya and Japan in Malava at the project demonstration plots. On November 2nd , the final batch of soya beans were harvested from the demonstration plots by Daizu Kids; in preparation of Soya Cooking activities planned for December 8th, 2013.
1. Edutainment for Kids
UMN organized a series of activities in anticipation of “Daizu Kids harvest and soya bean preparation day” scheduled for 8th December 2013.
On harvest day, 53 participants including 39 children from 6 CBO groups (Malava, Mwamba, Chegulo, Shivanga, Lukume, Buyangu) were mobilized to participate. Activities began with educative competitive activities organized for children. These included song, dance and poems.
Daizu Kids from County reciting poems on soya bean harvest & cooking day
2. Soya bean harvesting
UMN also organized the children to participate in the harvesting of soya bean from the demonstration plots. Harvesting was carried out by Daizu kids under close supervision of UMN and agricultural officers from the county.
Daizu kids harvesting soya beans
Daizu kids carrying soya beans from demonstration plot
3. Soya bean preparation
Daizu kids harvest day also included cooking of soya beans aimed at demonstrating their nutiritional value. Soya beans harvested were prepared and served to the children and other participants during the harvest day.
Harvested soya beans from demonstration plot
4. Training & Sensitization
Other activities carried out during the Daizu Kids harvest day included sensitization and training of community on need to embrace soya bean farming. Once again, UMN commissioned agricultural officers from the County to speak on nutritional benefits of soya bens on human health. All participants were taken through the harvesting process as well as preservation of harvested beans including cooking recipes.
UMN community mobilizers have continued with sensitization meetings in various villages around the project area with a view to encouraging individual farmers to plant soya beans alongside other traditional crop such as maize and beans. Soya beans planted at the demonstration plot have resisted harsh weather conditions including cold weather and rain with hail stones producing a good yield as opposed to the traditional bean counterpart. With the demonstration plot receiving a continuous flow of visitors, it is hoped that it will serve as a good example for the community to embrace soya bean planting as a measure to curbing food insecurity and nutritional balance within the county.
UMN harvest day activities received positive responses from the Community with children from over 6 groups within the County participating. The soya bean recipes used during the event were very popular with the children who recited poems and dance expressing their happiness and satisfaction of the event.
It was therefore agreed that demonstration pots would be set up in other regions as part of the outreach program aimed at popularizing the use of soya as a nutritional substitute for good health especially for children under 5 years of age.
UMN has also identified farmers who will act as reference points for other community members in the demonstration plots to be set up. These farmers will have the responsibility of encouraging the transfer of knowledge earned from training at demonstration lot to other homes. Extension visits will also be arranged to speak to parents on soya bean farming.
UMN also plans to mobilize Daizu kids to participate in cultural activities such as dance, songs etc. During the visit by JAT and JICA officials in February 2014.
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