Joseph Obonyo had been a boda-boda (motorbike) operator in Rongo town. He did very little as far as farming was concerned; in fact he left the responsibility of farming to his wife. From his boda-boda business, Obonyo used to get an average of 700/- daily of which he used to deposit 400/- to his account to repay for a loan he took from the bank to purchase the motorbike. It was a HUGE challenge to him since he used to purchase all their ration from farming just maize production. Purchasing vegetables on daily basis from the market became a norm for them. They too, abandoned coffee farming once the sugar belt took over.
Now with the formation of Sustainable Village Resources – Rongo / Kenya – in partnership with PRI Kenya have identified and recruited Joseph as one of the Rongo Organic Coffee Project beneficiaries started up in 2015. Obonyo benefited from coffee seedlings issued to the project beneficiaries. Obonyo has attended several specialized Permaculture and coffee agronomy workshops through the project.
Since then he has established food forests and redesigned his land exponentially! He has planted a variety of crops which has regenerated the land. This has enabled him to supplement his family with better nutrition overall. His wife no longer goes to the market to purchase the local vegetables. They have become model farmers for the region and sells the surplus to the neighbors and local markets. He’s now established a fully mature coffee food forest and sells his coffee to SVR for PRI Kenya to market. He says he’s much happier, wiser and wants more farmers to join the movement.
He’s part of the latest programme – PermEzone that will help expand the number of farmers in the region. He’s happy to be part of the ongoing TOT as the lead farmer to take this pilot Programme further and the development of Permaculture model farms take shape!