Over 800 families get relief food from well wishers in Kwale

Base Titanium's Community Relations Manager Mr. Pius Kassim (holding bucket) gives out some of the food to the community. PHOTO: SITA LAWRENCE.

Kwale, KENYA: Over 800 families in Mtsunga and Kasemeni villages in Lungalunga sub-county on Tuesday received relief food worth sh. 800, 000 from well wishers.

The donation which was made by Base Titanium Mining Company in partnership with Fanikisha foundation, Kwale county government and Kenya Red Cross Society, included 12 tones of grains, maize flour, beans, rice among others.

Speaking at the hand-over event at Mtsunga village in Kwale county, Base Titanium’s Community Relations Manager Mr. Pius Kassim, said that the ongoing food security situation has continued to affect hundreds of families across the entire region and it is therefore imperative that their organization has stepped in to help the needy families.

“We have come to this area to help the families that are adversely affected by drought since this county is the home of our core operations and the well-being of the community is a big concern of ours,” he said.

Mr. Kassim said that their company has set an approach to strengthening food security in the County and improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers.

“As a company, we are proud of this initiative which will ease access to food for the local community and we remain dedicated to our long term agricultural strategy in Kwale,” he added.

Kwale county first lady Chiristine Mvurya who is also the founder of Fanikisha Foundation, also contributed 356 packets of porridge flour, 202 packets of sanitary towels and 200 panties for girls among other goodies aimed at helping the needy families.

Mrs. Mvurya said that the sanitary towels and panties they donated were to help girls who lack the essential resources when they are on their menses; which leads to most of them missing out on classes.

Locals present commended the initiative and at the same time challenged the government to devise permanent solutions for mitigating drought in dry areas.

Mr. Ngome, from Kasemeni area said they are grateful for the efforts made by Base Titanium and the county government to eliminate hunger but urged the national government to find permanent solutions to drought.

Another resident from Mtsunga village Mr. Chigale Nyota said that locals face challenges in finding food since the charcoal business they rely on is not doing well.

“The situation is getting out of control as bread winners we are sad to see our family members starving yet we cannot help. We would really appreciate if the government finds a lasting solution to this disaster,” he said.

The donation comes days after Kenya’s Metrological department issued a forecast of depressed rainfall across most parts of the country during the March- May rain season.

This is expected to hit crop production and food security in many areas of the country pushing many more people into a food crisis.

The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) estimates that about 4 million Kenyans will need humanitarian relief in the next one month in what looks like the worst drought the nation has faced so far.