Cheptebo AIC Rural Development Centre, Kerio Valley, Kenya

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Cheptebo News


Current Cheptebo news is posted on our facebook page. (Click to open.) 


Further information on selected news items is recorded below.


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August 2018   A new video featuring the work of CATIC  (The Cheptebo Agricultural Training and Innovation Centre) has just been released. As well as the training programme the video features interviews with local farmers who have already completed a training module at CATIC. To view this video click on the following link         https://vimeo.com/282192433 

June 2018     The revised version of our video entitled  “Cheptebo Making a Difference” has now been released. This video tells the story of the Cheptebo project from its inception, with photographs and interviews with those involved. A new section on the work of CATIC  (The Cheptebo Agricultural Training and Innovation Centre) and on-farm interviews with farmers who have attended the training course is now included.

To view, click on the link  https://vimeo.com/275319283

April 2018    First CATIC hostel officially opened.  Over 1,000 people gathered on 15th April to celebrate the official opening of the first accommodation block at CATIC. Constructed in just over four months, this will provide accommodation for 48 students attending training courses. This CATIC training complex now provides two classrooms, an administration and staff centre in addition to the new hostel. 

It is  planned to provide a second hostel as well as an ungraded kitchen and dining facilities to cater for the many students applying for training. Already over 800 students have taken the one week 'Introduction to Crop and Livestock Production in semi arid areas'. In response to requests from farmers, more specialist modules on Dairy Farming, Fruit and Vegetable Production and Beekeeping will now be offered in addition to the Introductory Module.

Part of the crowd which celebrated the official opening.

The new 'Jehovah Jire' Hostel

     The commemorative plaque             Classrooms and administration block

December 2017    New video release

Following a November visit by the team from Smithton Culloden Free Church in Inverness, Scotland  a professional quality video of the work of Cheptebo has now been produced .  It is entitled “Cheptebo Making a Difference” and can be viewed at  https://vimeo.com/247049201
Our grateful thanks to the Inverness team and to HCVF Television Studios in Inverness for producing this video.

September 2017       CATIC celebrates 17th Graduation Ceremony

On 1st September 12 students graduated from the one week training course in Crop and Livestock Production in semi arid areas. This brings to 436 the number of farmers who have now undertaken training at CATIC and have gone on to use the knowledge and experience gained to develop their farms by introducing new farming enterprises and production methods.

Graduating Class being addressed by the Guest Speaker

Rev Paul Cherop was guest speaker and presented the certificates

Graduating Class and Staff pose outside the main CATIC building

April 2017                                           Cheptebo Agricultural Training Centre wins top award at 2017 Eldoret Show


A national newspaper covered the event and carried a report which began "A.I.C Cheptebo Agricultural Training and Innovation Centre (CATIC) prove to be the premier agricultural training destination in the country recently after it won a top award at 2017 Eldoret National Show." To read the complete article , click here.

March 2017      Onset of rains brings hope that the drought is ending!

Some heavy rain showers at Cheptebo may indicate that the long awaited long rains have started. Drought conditions have persisted over the past month. The Kerio River is completely dry and local people can only find water by digging down into the river bed. Meanwhile the borehole at the centre continues to provide essential water supplies to the wider community.

February 2017    Drought continues in the Kerio Valley

Rainfall has been recorded over four days in both January and February. While this had had some effect on water supplies the onset of the longer rains is still eagerly anticipated. 

January 2017      Kerio Valley is currently experiencing it's worst drought  in over 30 years.


 Following the low rainfall levels in 2016, large parts of Kenya are facing severe drought conditions. In the southern Kerio Valley almost all the main water courses are drying up, including the main Kerio River (see picture below) and the water source which supplies the Cheptebo water pipeline. A severe lack of grazing and drinking water is already causing a growing death rate amongst local livestock.

The borehole situated within the Cheptebo Centre, one other community borehole and one at a recently opened hotel are the only reliable water sources at present. With water being pumped continuously it is still not sufficient to meet all demands and restrictions have had to be imposed to ensure there is sufficient water for essential needs, both within the Centre and in the wider community. The onset of rains, normally expected in March/April, is eagerly awaited.

November 2016 

The first one week Module on Computer Training was hosted by CATIC (Cheptebo Agricultural Training and Innovation Centre) in November. It was attended  by local leaders, pastors, school teachers and others interested in learning to use computers effectively. 

During the same week the 12th Module on 'Introduction to Crops and Livestock Production in semi arid areas' was also presented for about 30 farmers.On the Friday of that week a Graduation Ceremony has held for those graduating from both courses.

            The 'Introduction to Computing' class in session

             Graduating class poses in front of the CATIC building

October 2016              The Kenya Standard national newspaper recently carried a report on the development of the Cheptebo Centre and the impact it has made on the surrounding community. The article can be found on the following link:  


                                           http://www.standardmedia.co.ke/article/2000220019/missionaries-turn-dry-rocky-kerio-valley-into-food-heaven

                       Participants from the first training course,                                                                                     Training class of self sponsored farmers from

                          from Soy South, Soy North and Baringo County                                                                       Nandi,  Uasin Gishu, Baringo and Elgeyo Marakwet Counties

June 2016     June has been an eventful and exciting month in the ongoing development at Cheptebo. On Sunday 19th June the official opening and dedication of AIC Cheptebo Agricultural Training and Innovation Centre (CATIC) took place. The Chief Guest was Baringo Deputy Governor Mathew Tuitoek representing the Governor who was unable to attend. Rev Luka Maiyo AIC Deputy Bishop North Rift area was the main speaker and conducted the dedication of the new facilities. Also in attendance were the Governor and Senator of Elgeyo Marakwet County, Speaker of the County Assembly, Members of Parliament, CECs, Department of Agriculture staff and leaders of AIC. 

For a full report of the event please click here.      A report from Education News can be viewed here.

August 2015   

Cheptebo leads the way in introducing new innovations in semi arid agricultural production


Below are some examples of  recent innovations which can be seen on the CRDC farm. (Pictures below, top row from left to right)


Farming God's Way has produced some impressive results. Cabbages are not well suited to the hot, dry conditions in the Kerio valley but large, healthy crops are currently being produced. Similar results have been obtained for maize and bean crops.


Grafted Mango seedlings are now produced in large quantities at the centre tree nursery. Farmers are able to purchase quality assured seedlings of various varieties suited to their particular needs and preferences.


Lucerne, is a leguminous, high protein livestock feed  not normally grown in the semi arid areas.. However recent trials at Cheptebo have established that good yields are possible in this area and plans are being made to expand production to support the growing livestoch sector.

Pictures above - left to right


Tissue Culture Banana plantlets.  Slow rates of natural reproduction and disease problems have necessitated the introduction of this new innovation. Plantlets are raised in sterile, laboratory conditions from disease free parent material. The plantlets are then supplied to Cheptebo for growing on and subsequent sale. Known varieties, which are disease free and suited to various growing conditions and market demands are made available in this way to local farmers.


 Drip Irrigation provides a very efficient way of utilising limited water supplies in semi arid areas. The Cheptebo farm operates and demonstrates various  techniques based on water efficient irrigation principles.


Mango Fruit Fly Pheromone Trap.  With the very rapid increase in mango production in the southern Kerio valley, the mango fruit fly has become a major problem which seriously affects fruit quality and harvests. Chemical spraying has been costly, fairly ineffective and leaves chemical residues on the fruit. A very effective alternative control method, recently introduced at Cheptebo, is the  Mango Fruit Fly Pheromone Trap which uses pheromones to attract and destroy male fruit flies, thus breaking the breeding cycle. The results have been very positive and local farmers are now adopting this innovation.


   All these innovations, and much more, are included in the training programmes of the Cheptebo Agricultural Training     and Innovation Centre.


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