Drought is one of the biggest threats to the well-being of people living in Kenya's arid and semi-arid lands (ASALs), where poverty and vulnerability to climate shocks are particularly high. Food insecurity and drought emergencies in ASALs are a product of challenges such as population growth, environmental pressures, chronic poverty and inequality.

Drought cuts across sectors and requires support from both national and international partners. The following projects, financed by the Government and international partners, are helping NDMA to realise its mandate:

1.European Union Support to Drought Risk Management in Kenya

The European Union (EU) has, since 2007, been working with Kenyans to manage drought risk . The EU support has been provided in different projects funded under the 9th, 10th and 11th European Development Fund (EDF). The projects are implemented through the NDMA.

Ongoing projects funded under 11th EDF

2018 - 2022

  • EU Budget: Euro 30.5 million (81.3%)
  • GoK Budget: Euro 2.5 million (6.6%)
  • Grant beneficiaries Budget: 4.5 million (12.1%)

a)EDE/Support to Resilient Livelihoods (EDE Pillar 4)
Implemented through a Call for Proposals targeting Non-State actors, county governments or consortia in target four (4) marginal agriculture and agro-pastoral counties with high vulnerability to droughts and high proportion of children and women that suffer from malnutrition.

b) EDE/Support to Drought Risk Management (EDE Pillar 5)
Implemented by NDMA with focus on drought early warning and response, specifically timeliness, accountability and efficiency of drought response, in all 23 ASAL counties.


c) Ending Drought Emergencies: Support to Drought Risk Management & Coordination
The Project is aligned to the Common Programme Framework (CPF) that operationalises the countryÔÇÖs Ending Drought Emergencies (EDE) strategy. Speci´¼ücally, the programme supports two of the six EDE Pillars that fall under the National Drought Management Authority through two ongoing grants as follows;

i) EDE/Support to Pillar 5 (Drought Risk Management and Coordination)

  • EU Budget: Euro 22,894,296 (79.2%)
  • GoK Budget: Euro 6,030,000 (20.8%)

This component focuses on enhancing drought preparedness at county and community level, leading to better capacity for early response to drought crises as follows;
Drought Preparedness/Resilience - focuses on enhancing drought preparedness at county and community level, leading to better capacity for early response to drought crises.
Drought Response - focuses on reducing loss of household livelihood assets during drought episodes by ensuring effective and transparent mechanisms for the timely disbursement of drought contingency funds.

ii) EDE/Support to Pillar 6 (Support to Institutional Development and Knowledge Management)

  • EU Budget: Euro 6,815,880 (79.4%)
  • GoK Budget: Euro 1,765,360 (20.6%)

The component supports realisation of the objectives of EDE Pillar 6 by supporting institutional development and knowledge management.

Completed projects funded under 10TH EDF 

The NDMA implemented two projects funded under the 10th EDF within the broader Kenya Rural Development Programme (KRDP) as follows;

d) KRDP -ASAL Drought Management (2011-2016)
EU Budget - Euro 11 million

The ASAL Drought Management (ASAL DM) Project was implemented through four annual programme estimates (work plans) funded wholly by the EU. It built on the activities of the DMI project to strengthen, institutionalise and operationalise drought management systems at national and county levels. This enhanced capacity of ASAL communities to effectively respond to drought crises.

e)KRDP-ASAL Drought Contingency Fund (2011-2016)

  • EU Budget: Euro 10 million (88.4 %)
  • GOK Budget: Euro 1,307,428 (11.6 %)

The objective of the ASAL Drought Contingency Fund Project (ASAL-DCFP) was to ensure that communities in drought prone areas are more resilient to drought and other effects of climate change through provision of financing for both drought preparedness and mitigation under two specific components;
i) Drought preparedness
ii) Flexible financial resources for early response to drought
The Fund facilitated early mitigation and reduced the time between warning of drought stress and response at county level. The DCFP enabled the NDMA to successfully pilot and test the use of set-aside finances for early response.

Completed project funded under 9TH EDE

f) Drought Management Initiative (2007 - 2011)
EU Budget - Euro 17.7 million

The Drought Management Initiative (DMI) was implemented through four annual programme estimates (work plans) funded wholly by the European Union within the framework of the Arid Lands Resource Management Project (ALRMP II) in the Ministry of State for Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands.

The overall project objective was to contribute to the improvement of effectiveness and efficiency of the drought management system in Kenya, building on the activities of the ALRMP II and the ECHO -funded drought disaster reduction and preparedness projects.

The DMI focused on improving drought management capacities in the ASALs through establishment of robust systems for drought risk management at national, sub national and community levels. The project contributed to the consolidation and institutionalisation of Kenya's drought management system.

2. Hunger Safety Net Programme (HSNP)

This project is financed by DFID to reduce extreme hunger and vulnerability of the poorest households through the regular payment of an unconditional cash transfer. It ensures effective, financially secure and well-targeted use of safety net and cash transfer programmes to support some of the most vulnerable and poor in Kenya. It is currently in four counties namely Turkana, Marsabit, Wajir and Mandera;

3. Climate Adaptation (ADA Consortium)

The Adaptation consortium is a four-year Department for International Development (DFID) funded initiative that is central to the National Drought Management Authority strategy. The consortium funded under Strengthening Adaptation and Resilience to Climate Change in Kenya plus (StARCK+) aims at preparing county government access global climate finance fund in support of adaptation and climate resilient development and to mainstream mechanisms that allow communities to prioritise investments in public goods that build their resilience to climate change.


4. United Nations Development Programme

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) works towards strengthening the resilience of communities affected by climate change risks and disasters through a number of projects implemented by the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA). The projects aim at promoting national institutional and policy frameworks and infrastructure for disaster risk mitigation while working with vulnerable communities to reduce the impacts and risks of natural and man-made disasters in Kenya by supporting recovery, stabilization of livelihoods and protection and empowerment of vulnerable groups. .

The following UNDP projects are implemented under the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA):

5. ForPAc..Towards Forecast Based Preparedness Action

ForPAc is a collaborative research project that seeks to provide preparedness action among key stakeholders in drought and flood management by providing lead time information to enable effective decision making. The project is undertaken in Kitui as the model for drought and Nairobi and Nzoia basin for flood mitigation. The project partners include the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA), Kenya Red Cross through its International Centre for Humanitarian Affairs (ICHA), IGADs International Climate Prediction Centre (ICPAC), the Kenya Meteorology Department (KMD), University of Sussex; Oxford University, UK Met Office and Kings College London and the University of Reading.

The project conducts capacity building and provides information on Vegetation Cover Index (VCI), Standard Precipitation Index (SPI), and soil moisture information. It is supported under the Strengthening Humanitarian Emergencies And Resilience (SHEAR) programme funded by the UKAID.