Kenya: Drought Cycle Management

The Ilkerin Loita Integral Development Programme (ILIDP) is a community organization that has successfully incorporated drought cycle management in all its operations.  Started in 1972, ILIDP is owned and run by the Loita Maasai pastoralists of the Narok District, Kenya.  It consists of one main centre and six Pastoralists Community Development Associations.  ILIDP supports and facilitates initiatives by these community organizations, each of which serves between 2,000 and 4,000 people.  In 2000-01, the community associations and their disaster committees carried out all drought-relief and post-relief activities.  ILIDP’s role was to link the associations to relief agencies such as World Concern, World Vision, and the World Food Programme.  Efforts to prepare for and manage droughts include: digging strategic boreholes; establishing a cereal bank to store surplus grain; linking with credit providers and other development and relief agencies; and organizing livestock offtake and marketing to prepare for drought. Traditionally the Maasai assured their food security by raiding their neighbors’ cattle.  ILIDP has encouraged locals to grow grain instead—so the warriors now “raid the earth for sustenance”.  As a result, food security has improved in their households by 65%.  Strong local organizations are able to adjust their activities to suit the needs at each stage in the drought cycle.  They can respond quickly and alert outside organizations (which have slower response times) to the changing situation on the ground. Link to Source

RegionSub-Saharan Africa
Settlement TypeRural
Objective"Serendipitous" Adaptation
ImpactsCrop Yield Decrease, Drought and Aridity, Water Shortages
TargetednessBuilding Response Capacity, Climate Risk Management
Adaptation Strategies EmployedBuilding Institutions, Empowering People, Improving Infrastructure