Sekedo, a drought-resistant sorghum for Karamoja

| April 14, 2014

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This week’s story from Kenya shows how members of the Maasai community are changing their traditional practices to adapt to the changing climate. Our script of the week covers the same ground for a different community – farmers in the Karamoja region of northeastern Uganda.

The climate in Karamoja was difficult before the weather patterns started to change. Karamoja is a semi-arid savannah, with bush and mountainous areas. In the past, there were short rains during April and a longer rainy season from June to early September. But the annual rains were often sparse, or failed completely. Drought and hunger are recurrent features of life in Karamoja.

More recently, the region – and the entire country – is experiencing increased variability in rainfall patterns.

Sorghum and millet provide the bulk of the diet in the region. The Dodoth, Jie, and Karimojong people have adapted to the often harsh environment by concentrating much of their efforts on the welfare of their livestock.

This script shows how one farmer in Karamoja profited from growing a new and improved quick-maturing type of sorghum called Sekedo. Growing Sekedo may help Karamoja farmers adapt to the shorter rainy season.