NDF - Financing for climate change and development projects

NCF: Climate Smart Agriculture for Improved Rural Livelihoods [NDF C62 B 3]

Photo: Heli Sinkko
Photo: Heli Sinkko
Photo: Heli Sinkko
Photo: Heli Sinkko
The project has supported farmers to implement Climate Smart Agriculture and establish sustainable farmer enterprises for the adaptation to and mitigation of climate change

Climate Smart Agriculture for Improved Rural Livelihoods
Ref: NDF C62 B 3

Nordic Partner: The Foundation Vi Planterar Träd (Vi-skogen / Vi Agroforestry)
Local Partners: Dairy Goats Association of Kenya (DGAK), Miriu Integrated, Western Kenya Tree Planters Association (WETPA), Kimaeti Farmers CBO, Kenya Rural SACCOs societies Union Ltd (KERUSSU LTD)
Total Project Cost: EUR 505,154
NCF Financing: EUR 300,000
Agreement Signed: 6 February 2015
Project Classification: Combination
Duration: 35 Months

Project Objective

The overall objective of the Climate Smart Agriculture for Improved Rural Livelihood project was to contribute to improved living conditions for farmer households and mitigate climate change through Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) and in particular Sustainable Agriculture Land Use Management (SALM).


The project was undertaken in the Bungoma and Kisumu Counties in Kenya where the population depend on carrying out mixed farming systems for their livelihoods. However, the prevailing farming systems and degraded land are not productive enough to provide food security for the farming community in the area. Farmers are using conventional and typically poor farming technologies which can increase vulnerability to the impacts of climate change.

The SALM concept is a methodology for farmers to adapt to the impacts of climate change and achieve increased environmental resilience in different climatic or agro-ecological zones. Adoption of SALM practices can intensify productivity on croplands and grasslands reducing the pressure on agricultural, wetlands or forest lands. The project has increased altogether 5,300 farmers’ resilience to climate change through improved and less variable crop yields and helped the farmers to move from subsistence agriculture to market-oriented agroforestry. Four farmer organisations have established business enterprises in four value chains: dairy goats, bananas, commercial tree nurseries and bee keeping. The farmer enterprises have also been supported to access savings and loaning products to farmers. Access to credit is a major hindrance to scale up from subsistence farming to commercial farming.

The project has delivered the following main outputs which have led to four sustainable, climate-friendly farmer enterprises being established and operating at the end of the project:
(i) 5,300 farmers supported to adopt SALM practices and to rehabilitate degraded land by planting 17,700 trees
(ii) 4 business plans implemented successfully enabling farmer groups to undertake market oriented farming
(iii) 2 SACCOs and 150 Village Savings and Loans Association (VSLA) formed by farmer groups enabling small-holder farmers to save and borrow money

Relevance for Climate Change

Adoption of CSA practices has not only helped the farmers to adapt to climate change but also to rehabilitate degraded land and increase the amount of soil organic carbon in agricultural land. The project has contributed to climate change mitigation efforts by helping to sequester about 175,194 tons of CO2 over a 20 years’ lifetime through the capture of soil organic carbon and use of woody perennials. The project has engaged the farmers to participate in the rehabilitation of degraded areas by applying diverse land management practices. Together with stakeholders, the project has developed and implemented restoration and rehabilitation plans over 6 ha of land. Tree establishment has been the key component in promoting rehabilitation efforts since it is a sustainable long term solution.

Innovation and Knowledge Transfer

The project was the first scaling-up effort of the lessons learnt from the Kenya Agricultural Carbon Project (KACP) and was designed in way that it provided an opportunity for farmer organizations to play a central role in organizing extension services and carbon monitoring for its members. The project has employed CSA as a tool that has enabled small-holder farmers to improve their livelihoods through the engagement in farmer businesses. With increased crop and livestock productivity, the project has demonstrated the feasibility of value addition techniques that can be adopted by farmers.
More information

Final Report