KMFRI together with other collaborators won the Bridge Spark Fund for 2020. Out of the 256 proposals submitted we managed to be among the four that got the award to implement the project,"Diversifying blue livelihoods through holistic ocean farming". Sustainable Ocean Alliance (SOA),a US organization that empowers global youth to take action and protect our oceans, is the Lead implementing institution. KMFRI is one of the implementing partners together with GREAT (Gaining Research Experience in Africa for Tomorrow) Institute in the Gambia, a coastal science institute with multidisciplinary experts working closely with coastal communities on projects including ecosystem services and food security. This team is adapting seaweed and other forms of aquaculture to local conditions, improving livelihoods and creating a path to a sustainable food system in Kenya and The Gambia.
KMFRI team include; Mr. Francis Okalo (Kenya team leader; an expert in seaweed mariculture, applied phycology, Integrated Multitrophic Aquaculture and sustainable aquaculture development), Drs.Morine Mukami(ascientist in mariculture development, Environmental Impact Assessment and GIS and mapping) and MsNorah Magangi(a technician in seaweed mariculture and smallholder community mariculture development). Seaweed being one of the economic activities that has the ability to bring about drastic positive changes to the vulnerable groups among the coastal communities has been targeted in Kenya. The team hopes to work with four seaweed village communities in Kenya. These will be identified after a site selection survey of proposed villages (Kibuyuni, NyumbaSita, Mwazaro and Tumbe) is completed. A Kshs. 15 million grant was awarded for implementing the one year project. Though the Corona pandemic has stalled the field work related activities, the team is still working on desk based research and meeting online via zoom.
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