About the Impact Center

This center was was developed to provide ECHO services to help those in East Africa who work with the poor more effectively, especially in the area of ​​agriculture and alternative methods. ECHO East Africa works as a basic training center giving technical assistance to help organizations and community development workers to work more effectively to reduce hunger.



Services

  • Conduct research and development on locally appropriate sustainable agriculture practices
  • Collaborate with, and provide networking opportunities for, development agencies working in East Africa
  • Provide garden displays and demonstrations of agricultural options
  • Provide agricultural resources for study
  • Demonstrate alternative training methods, including creative collaboration and exhibitions
  • The ECHO seed bank provides packaged seeds, as well as seed exchange opportunities and seed conservation education.
  • Training for home gardens (organic gardens, kitchen gardens, gardens, bags and manufacture of peat)
  • Training and visits to fruit tree nurseries
  • Organization of conferences, workshops, forums, exchange visits, and training in best practices
  • Network between farmers and other development partners
  • Conduct agricultural fairs
 

Contact:

Erwin Kinsey

ECHO East Africa Impact Center
P O Box 15205
Arusha Tanzania

eastafrica@echonet.org

 

East Africa Updates

Parthenium Hysterophorus Awareness Project: May 2018-06-15

An update from ECHO East Africa
by Malvery Begley

Thadei Lema, a regular guest of ECHO East Africa, is a visually impaired or low vision youth who has been visiting ECHO’s farm to learn more about conservation agriculture for over a month, despite of his eyesight condition. Over the course of knowing him the ECHO staff has been touched by his determination to learn. This month, Thadei and Harold of ECHO were able to reach Arusha Technical College to learn about a guiding cane being constructed by Arusha Technical students and Bio-medical engineer. The cane is constructed to sense obstructions, water, and instable areas while walking. The cane sends a vibration through the handle when approaching a ledge and unsafe areas. The cane is to be issued to Thadei for testing after one week after final modifications are complete. Thadai has also become an inspiration to those helping to educate others about Parthenium hysterophorus. He was taught about the dangers of Parthenium while at ECHO. After being taught about Parthenium, Thadei asked a friend to help reach the area of Morombo in Arusha, an area he has been told which is greatly affected by Parthenium.

Group working to eradicate Parthenium
Group working to eradicate Parthenium

Thadei has become a great influence to those who know him and those who have heard his story. The following days, the Parthenium Awareness team took him to the main road to spend a full morning of uprooting the weed. The committee is thankful for the impacts that the project has had on the community and outreach is continuing to grow.

At the end of May, a few members of the Parthenium Committee visited the village of Bwawani where Parthenium reigns the fields. The area is so devastated with the weed that many farms are engulfed with the weed leaving some farms deserted due to extremely poor yields. The committee met with community members who have experienced all of the negative impacts of Parthenium, some not even able to leave home during the day due to a severe allergy caused by Parthenium. The committee is planning an outreach program in the village of Bwawani that will bring sufficient education to the area.

The effect of Parthenium
The effect of Parthenium

The Feed the Future/Peace Corps funded project is coming to an end in July, however the committee sees that many communities yet need sufficient education, and they call for an answer how to overcome the toxic weed. The month of June will be a busy month for the Parthenium Awareness project as the committee is determined for a strong finish and aspires to receive funding for continuing the outreach program within following months.

About East Africa

Food insecurity has increased significantly in East Africa due to the rapid increase in population, with an increase of 150% by 2050. Over 40% of children in East Africa are malnourished. The largest number of these children are orphaned and living in difficult circumstances. Most of the rural population lives in poverty, relying on a subsistence lifestyle. Some of the reasons for this situation include:

  • A High rate of loss of yield
  • Underdeveloped, weak markets, farmers lack the infrastructure to improve thier value chains
  • Minority farmers and herdsmen in the region, don't have adequate access to agricultural services, continuing education or access to formal training
  • Increased pressure forcing families to cultivate a little land, which results in land degradation and loss of sustainability in food production
  • Drought, especially in arid pastoralist areas.
  • Deforestation
  • Flooding
  • Climate

Where we are located

Drive to the North West 8 km from Arusha to Nairobi, after Ngaramtoni, University of Mount Meru, the camp two Chinese road, and after a huge hit on the left. Turn right at the sign of a large tablet of ECHO green / garden trees specific information and follow the dirt road a distance of 200 meters, passing a concrete wall on the left. Once the wall, turn left through the iron gate (there are small signs here of the garden) and forward through a tree nursery and office ECHO which has marked. If you come to via public transportation, bus riding from town to ngaramtoni; then another bus from ngaramtoni climbed up Radio News Special. Guards and staff will be happy to give you directions to the front door of the ECHO office in East Africa.