By Daniel Mwambi Mogere

Health is a fundamental issue that is why in most definitions of what health is, it can only best be defined as a “state of complete physical, mental and social well–being and not merely the absence of disease and infirmity.” Our First coronavirus outbreak case as a country was confirmed by the ministry of health in Nairobi on12th March 2020.  A Kenyan citizen who traveled back to Nairobi from the United States via London was the victim. Since then the number of COVID-19 positive cases has been escalating exponentially.

A bean crop. Picture by Kataru Concepts

The COVID-19 epidemic has globally affected the economy of many nations. The post-COVID-19 effects show that the pandemic will push millions of people into extreme poverty with the most affected being women and girls. Coronavirus effect has also been reported to increase unemployment among people and subsequently pushing most SMEs businesses to closure hence pulling down the economy. More broadly, we continue to see the pandemic, inflation, and supply chain disruptions as the top three threats to the country’s economic growth.

According to the Kenya National Bureau of statistics and partners confirm that the private sector is facing slowed activities due to reduced consumption and demand for inputs. Coronavirus has adversely affected the tourism sector with a reduction in the number of foreign tourists coming to Kenya. The transport sector has also been affected as the number of people using public service vehicles has reduced and sought to private means. We continue to fight the pandemic as well as keep the economy afloat. The government should be encouraged to put measures in place that can help small businesses to thrive despite the rising cases of COVID-19.

Properly wearing a face mask to fight COVID-19. Picture by Kataru Concepts.

Due to the introduction of curfew and limiting the movement of people, many industrial activities have stopped causing job losses. Measures were taken by the government to slow the spread of COVID-19 resulted in to increase in the cost of transport and living but nonetheless, it has helped reduce the spread significantly. Requirements by every passenger to wear a face mask and having sanitizers at every boarding point have demonstrated to be an effective approach in managing the spread of the virus.

Another challenge that has been created by coronavirus is food insecurity. Farming activities have been scaled down, supply chains stopped, extension services disappeared, as the demand for good quality food increases. It’s time for our young people to readdress the issue of unemployment by tapping into the agriculture sector. Through technology and available knowledge, our youth will be able to address the unemployment crisis and put in place food security measures, and avert a future crisis as the global population grows. An anonymous writer once said “We need to address our global challenges with designated thinking, by using human-centered techniques i.e., empathy, innovation, and creativity. We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them”. The feed the future initiative can grow wings if young people are leading the agriculture sector through technology.

Emmanuel Buchichi, a Kakamega county Youth leader on his sukuma wiki farm. Picture by Kataru Concepts

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