Nutrition Partnership

The Nutrition Partnership

The village of Kamunga (also known as Otho Abwao) is located in southwest Kenya within sight on Lake Victoria.  More than a thousand people live in Kamunga.  Over the past decade, the village population has been decimated by a tradition of Levirate marriage coupled with the HIV/AIDS epidemic.  This has left many orphans and widows with less than subsistence incomes and the inability to lift themselves out of poverty.

During the same time period, changes in weather have wrought havoc on the food supplies in East Africa with drought throughout the Horn resulting in widespread famine.  While the village of Kamunga is outside of the region facing immediate threat, the lack of food supplies in neighboring Somalia and northeast Kenya has resulted in a dramatic increase in the price of commodities.

The regional famine and lack of income generation within the village creates a dire condition for orphans and widows.

To respond to this challenge, we have leveraged prior success in a similar village in Tanzania with our long-standing relationship with Kamunga:
  1. to empower widows to earn a living through raising chickens for eggs and meat;
  2. to enhance access to food at school as part of a simple lunch program;
  3. to improve an understanding of proper nutrition in African students through teacher professional development and short courses; and
  4. to improve science, technology, engineering, math, and medicine skills in students in the USA through easily accessible nutrition lessons mapped to Missouri state standards.
As part of this project, we pledge to measure and report the following:
  1. the nutritional knowledge of target students in Africa and the USA (with an expectation that the project will increase knowledge);
  2. results of attendance and standardized test scores for African students (with an expectation that more students will attend school for longer periods with higher exam scores); and
  3. the financial status of widows in Kamunga (with an expectation that the numbers of chicken raised for eggs and meat will result in higher disposable incomes, improved access to education and healthcare, and improved savings).
We are seeking financial partners to sponsor aspects of this project including:
  1. seed capital for chicken husbandry;
  2. initial support for the school lunch program (long term sustainability will be achieved through successfully chicken husbandry); and
  3. support for scientific measurements of baseline data and assessment of outcomes.
CAPTION: Here is a group of 8th grade students wearing T-shirts donated by the Rolla Community Garden.  Promoting linkage between the United States and Kenya transfers technology and establishes trust.

CAPTION: Here is a group of first grade students waiting in line to receive a lunch funded by the Nutrition Partnership.

Would you like to learn more? 

You may also enjoy the article in the Rolla Daily News about our ongoing work in the region.

You may also enjoy the article at Missouri S&T about Katelyn Denby, the student who has been working on this project as part of her honors senior thesis.

Or, please email me at:

Elizabeth 15yrs 8th
Doctor / Science
 Winnie 13yrs 6th
Lawyer / Science
 Charles 16yrs 8th
Ambassador / Math
 Lillian 11yrs 4th
Doctor / English
 Christina 14yrs 8th
RN / Social studies
 Meshack 14yrs 7th
Driver / Science
 Duncan 10yrs 4th
Pilot / Math
 Agnesa 13yrs 7th
Magistrate / Sociology