Vesikanava Sanaagissa, joka kerää sadevettä

What we do

Adapting to climate crisis

Sustainability instead of crises

Climate crisis, climate change, global warming – many names, the etymology of which is not worth delving into here, but the impact of which on food security and livelihoods in East Africa is undeniable.

In the spring of 2023, six consecutive rainy seasons had failed. Famine had been declared in most parts of Somalia. In Kenya, the cost of food had made three meals a day a utopia for the majority of families – for example, the price of essential maize flour had more than doubled in five years.

There are numerous challenges: East African countries often rely on food imports, especially wheat from Ukraine and Russia. Erratic rainfall and extended dry periods have made cultivation difficult. The cost of fertilizers has become unaffordable for most small-scale farmers.

The climate crisis is also linked to women’s rights. Women are often the first to compromise their nutrition. Girls are more likely to be taken out of school to help with food production and procurement. Girls might be married off at younger ages, shifting the responsibility of their food security to the husband’s family.

Hence, turning away from the climate crisis is not an option: humanity must find ways to adapt to its consequences and ensure that the escalation of the climate crisis is halted. In our projects, we primarily focus on building sustainable food production and climate resilience.

What does our work for building sustainable food production and climate resilience entail?

In its projects, International Solidarity Foundation seeks to ensure that the prerequisites for local sustainable food production are enhanced. This entails several aspects, such as:

  • We fund cooperatives that teach farmers various water-saving and drought-resistant cultivation methods. This includes both technical training and promoting suitable crop varieties. In Kenya, for instance, our focus is on local indigenous vegetables, which we believe in for production and processing.
  • We train female farmers to ensure that their contributions and expertise are integrated into communities. Often, women don’t own the land they cultivate and depend on the goodwill of their husbands. We aim to create conditions where women can demonstrate the significance of their work for both family and community well-being, thus improving their status as well.
  • We improve basic infrastructure when necessary. While we primarily focus on women’s economic rights, sometimes we need to lay the groundwork.

    In 2022, in partnership with ADO, we built over seven kilometers of various waterways, channels, and reservoirs in Somaliland. These ensure reliable water sources for farmers and livestock breeders, preventing them from having to leave their homes.

    We also make necessary equipment acquisitions for our partners. For example, in Kenya, food waste is a huge issue: about a third of crops spoil before reaching the dinner table. Together with our partners, we’ve acquired items like drying equipment, which helps preserve food for longer periods.

The significance of this kind of work is enormous at the local level. It increases food security, economic opportunities in the food market, and simultaneously fosters hope amidst a changing climate. For instance, the most important achievement of the water project in Somaliland was that those involved felt they could now remain in their hometowns.

ISF also engages in advocacy and stakeholder engagement, where we aim to highlight disparities in global South regarding food markets and climate financing. On the other hand, we establish connections between universities, businesses, and our projects, consistently striving to find more impactful ways to adapt to the consequences of the climate crisis.


  • Finding local, sustainable ways to adapt to the climate crisis.
  • Ensuring that local food production supports development.
Vedenkeruuallas, johon johdetaan sadevedet kanavia pitkin
Rainwater collection reservoirs in Sanaag. The reservoirs collect rainwater through a network of channels, ensuring an adequate water supply for farmers and livestock. Photo by Abdinasir Ali, 2023.



Women’s status in the labor market improves

Sustainable farming practices and food production enhance women’s standing in the labor market. Simultaneously, the well-being of families and the community improves.


Bringing crises under control

Instead of moving from crisis to crisis, communities can better prepare for challenging weather conditions and exceptional years.


Enhancing local production value-addition

By developing local food production and improving value-addition, women gain significant opportunities for additional income.


  • Global climate financing is still in its infancy: there is a need and place for local innovations, but scaling them requires a broader funding base.
  • Deepening climate crisis: adaptation is necessary, but ultimately, concerning trends must be halted and warming slowed.
  • Constructing local solutions into business ventures: innovations are the seed and beginning of all activities, but entering the food market demands certifications, trade agreements, and adeptness in bureaucracy.

Project details

Location: Kenya & Somaliland

Implementation period: 2021-

Partners: North Nyamira
Women Sacco, ADO