Lessons Learned

Nuru Burkina Faso Visits Nuru Kenya

Learning exchanges among Nuru Collective members are crucial for continued growth. In September 2023, the Nuru Burkina Faso team traveled to Kenya for a learning exchange with their fellow collective member, Nuru Kenya. During this time, Nuru Burkina Faso was able to immerse itself in Nuru Kenya’s lessons learned over the last 15 years of

Climate Strategy: An Interview with Nuru International’s Casey Harrison

In this second post in our three-part series on Nuru’s approach to climate change adaptation, we invite you to get to know Nuru International Impact and Learning Director Casey Harrison. In this interview, he shares more about his professional background and unpacks Nuru’s Community Climate Resilience Strategy–a vital aspect of the Nuru model in the face

Hope in Uncertain Times

Hope. I have been reflecting a lot lately on how absent this word has been from people’s mouths in recent days. The darkness of fear came so quickly that life from a month ago feels like it was already ages ago. I have had the fortune of living a life full of choices and wonder. A

Rural Farmers Staying Smart in Agriculture

The first, second, third, fourth, and fifth posts in this series are an attempt to convey how Nuru’s approach to rural livelihood development reaches farmers with knowledge, technology and opportunities that they demand and need. It requires intentional co-creation processes from design to impact and through to the continuous improvement of program activities using adaptive

Co-creating Local Value Chains

This post is the fifth in a six-part series on Nuru’s rural livelihoods programming and how it helps farmers and their families take steps to move from surviving to thriving in their communities. The first post, second post, third post, and fourth post can be viewed by clicking the corresponding links. Market-Based Development One of the keys to developing and

Driving Adaptive Programming with Data Amid Fall Armyworm

In 2016, in response to the Fall Armyworm (FAW) outbreak across Africa, Nuru developed a system of mobile data collection, data visualization, and targeted training and extension that provides timely, accessible and actionable FAW information directly to farmers. The system develops the capacity of Nuru staff and partners to effectively use smartphones, interpret mobile survey

Localizing Training and Extension

Nuru proudly focuses on being local. Nuru’s training curricula are designed to optimize the present capabilities, opportunities and motivations of the farmers they serve. For example, Nuru Kenya tested multiple varieties of improved dairy feed grass with direct input from Kenya Agricultural & Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) and champion farmers from local Nuru-supported farmer cooperatives.

Nuru Keeps the Culture in Livelihoods: Smart Farming

Feed grasses, beans, maize, goat and sheep fattening, and dairy are just a few of the activities that are part of a Nuru farmer’s livelihood landscape. There is an inherent art to smallholder agriculture that is in delicate balance with the needs of subsistence and the limits of the enabling environment. This balance can easily

Reflections on Expatriate Exit from Nuru Ethiopia in 2018

Expatriate Exit in Ethiopia Right now, the air is abuzz with opportunity in Ethiopia. Across the country there is talk of reform and change and new ideals upon which governance and growth can be built. It is too early to know what will happen long term, but 2018 has brought a palpable energy and hope

Water Access Restored to 1,000 Households

As I reflect on the exciting nature of the past three weeks—the sound of water filling a 100,000-liter tanker which had been empty for 8 years, community members cheering at the site of clean water flowing out of water sources that hadn’t worked for 5 years and jerry cans of all sizes waiting to be

Development Work That Makes a Lasting Impact

As my flight neared its destination, I tried to remember how I felt during my first descent into Addis ten years ago when it was not just my first trip to Ethiopia or Africa, but my first outside of the USA. I would spend a semester with Doane College professor, Betty Levitov, and 14 other

Nuru Uses Feedback to Promote Peace and Inclusion

Nuru prioritizes feedback. In 2015, the UN ratified the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals which defined 17 specific goals for ending poverty. The goal that relates most to the Nuru Leadership Program is number 16, which focuses on promoting “peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development…at all levels.” Nuru’s training on “the importance of feedback” is applicable

Five stages of Building a Local Measurement & Evaluation Team

As Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Program Manager for Nuru Kenya, I consistently work with my team to build up different strengths that enable us to objectively monitor and evaluate Nuru Kenya’s impact programs. I want to share my experience building a credible and sustainable M&E system in Kenya. Below are the five critical stages our

Reflections on Expatriate Exit from Nuru Kenya

2015 was a big year for Nuru Kenya. In June, our whole expatriate (expat) team living in Kenya packed up our suitcases, said our goodbyes, and headed out of town. Our Kenyan colleagues had already been running operations for a year and were well prepared to continue in our absence. Yet, this was a big

Nuru Social Enterprises Pivots to Regional Sustainability Strategy

Originally posted on Nuru Social Enterprises. Nuru Social Enterprises made a decision in August 2015 to not invest in Ethiopia. It was a tough call given that we have spent two years in Ethiopia researching and planning for investment with a team on the ground. But we’re extremely comfortable with our decision due to two undeniable