Traditional Community Mechanisms for Coping with Climate Change Among the Ilchamus Pastoralists in Marigat District Kenya

Congratulations to Dr. Clement Lenachuru who recently completed his PhD in CSU’s Department of Forest, Rangeland and Watershed Stewardship advised by Dr. Maria Fernandez-Gimenez.

Recently Clement shared details about his research with the Africa Center, which you can read about below.

TRADITIONAL COMMUNITY MECHANISMS FOR COPING WITH CLIMATE CHANGE AMONG THE ILCHAMUS PASTORALISTS IN MARIGAT DISTRICT KENYA

The project is based in Marigat district, Kenya. The aim is to document the indigenous knowledge of a pastoral community who live around Lake Baringo. This community is historically thought to have lived in this area since late 1800 after migration from Laikipia escarpment to avoid inter-clans fighting among the Maa speakers. Initially they practiced shifting cultivation by growing millet and corn, as a way of discouraging constant cattle raids from the surrounding hostile tribes. Later mid- 1900, as relative peace was realized, they started to accumulate cattle and pastoralism took root. Over time, the area experienced recurrent droughts that in the recent increased in frequency and intensity. This is attributed to ever changing climate in the region. This project was undertaken to find out and document the kind of local indigenous knowledge system used over time by the community to cope and adapt to the changing weather and climate. The project also aims at finding out how this knowledge is acquired, accumulated and passed from generation to generation. 

EXPECTED OUTCOMES OF PROJECT

The outcome of this project first, to enable the researcher get his PhD in Rangeland Science and Ecology; secondly, to inform the future of climate adaptation among the pastoral groups living in this region, third, to develop local strategies for coping and adapt to changing environment, and fourth, to recommend for policies that are sustainable in pastoral communities and promote their livelihoods in the face of climate change. 


PHOTOS

(1) Clement traveling back after FG sessions; (2&3) Kiserian location FG sessions; (4) Ng'ambo location FG session; and (5) Salabani location FG session