Living Waters would like to extend a sincere thank you to the donors who have sacrificially given in an effort to make the Living Waters Feeding Center in Kenya sustainable. With your support, we have completed Phase One of the farm implementation.
One June 1, 2016 Daryl and Living Waters volunteer, Alyssa Peterson departed for the return trip to Kenya with plans to complete Phase One of the Sustainable Farm project. Daryl was expecting this trip to be a bit more relaxed than the fast pace, high pressure trip that was completed in May, however, this trip would present challenges and pressures way beyond what was humanly possible.
With a wonderful lady, Corne, a volunteer from South Africa and Alyssa from Arizona, they would become the hands in caring for much that Daryl could not physically do. Alyssa was there for 5 weeks and Corne has volunteered for up to a year. It would have seemed that with the water tower erected, the land cleared, the fence 80 percent completed, the road built to connect the property with the main road, and the entrance gates built, that the rest was simply putting on the finishing touches. God must have been smiling at such a naive thought. The first challenge that I will not go into was a severe health issue that almost thwarted the trip before leaving Phoenix. I only bring this up as it is a testament that when we are doing Gods will, he will provide us with unimaginable strength to carry on His mission even though the devil has set out to stop God’s will being accomplished. Due to Daryl’s health, his son Joby, who does organic farming in Santa Rosa, California, came to assist in the project. His company, Whats Up Farm, was placed on hold while Joby spent three weeks making sure that everything needed to complete Phase One objectives would be met.
Living Waters sustainable farm project was greatly blessed by the expertise and co-operation of Whats Up Farm. Upon arrival, Daryl had to prioritize how all that needed to be done, would get done. There were three foot trenches to be dug that would exceed 3/4 of a mile, complicated by exceptionally high water tables just 1 foot under the ground, building an elevated pump house to install the diesel pump that would carry the water from the lake to the water tower, building a water intake system at the lake, installing 1/2 mile of 3″ water line and 3/4 mile of 2″ water distribution lines, installing 11 water kiosk valves, installing a 10,000 liter water tank on top of the 30 foot high water tower, connecting all of the plumbing with a total of 50 major valves, completing the dike that measured 130 feet long, 6 feet high and 15 feet wide using 20 dump truck loads of stone and clay, installing the final fence and energizing systems including solar charging, building out the control room for the fence system, completing the painting of the gate entrance, building a 26′ by 46′ metal workshop, purchasing a piece of farm equipment for harrowing the land, digging furrows for the available land for planting, installing the irrigation system, and on the last day of our project we were able to plant about 35 percent of the farm.
All of this would take place and be accomplished with the normal challenges of availability of supplies, weekly trip to Kisumu for these supplies, coordinating 25 people to work on various needs, and of course the unexpected difficulties that seem to hamper every worthwhile project. Praise to God, there were no accidents (which there was serious potential for), and after struggling for 3 days to get the irrigation system functioning, we were able to get the needed supply of water, and therefore plant what was available usable land for planting. We are waiting for the spring harvest to be completed by the family who leased us the land and this will open up about 65 percent more land for our use.
This week the farm manager reported that all of the crops planted which include, watermelons, greens, onions, okra, carrots, squash, tomatoes, beets and much more have all germinated and are growing well. Now we ask God to protect the farm from pestilence and disease and to help this farm to produce in ways that will give glory to Him.
As part of the ongoing security detail we purchased two, three month old German Shepard puppies. They will be wonderful watchdogs at the farm. We also hired on a Massai watchman. There are so many stories to share, but suffice it to say that God had His hand over this project. Most of the donations and pledges have been received and even though the project went $20,000 over budget (due to unexpected circumstances), God has and always will find ways for us to trust Him. I fully expect it to take several years for the farm to be in full production, however, the feeding center should start reaping the benefits within 3 months. Even thought there was exceptional rains at the start of the rainy season, the rains stopped early and most of the local corn and millet crops did not mature. This will cause a food shortage in the area and we believe that God saw this coming and inspired us last winter to move in the direction of this project.
This has been an amazing project that has far surpassed what I thought would be involved. I will tell you that we did the best we could, we did not skimp on getting the best available quality, and many locals could not understand why we would spend so much on approximately 7 acres of land. The reason is that this is a testament to God and for His glory, that this farm will produce food for his hungry children when many will go without, and this is a 50 year project. There will be very little in the way of maintenance or upgrades that will need to be done and therefore it was an investment into the future. Thank you all for your support and please keep the Living Waters Farm in your thoughts, prayers and potential giving plans.