Boosting food security, safety and nutrition of slum dwellers

The city of Nairobi is located in Eastern Africa, in the Republic of Kenya. High population growth in Nairobi has created increasing pressure on resources. Therefore, many informal settlements have emerged to accommodate the urban citizens.

These settlements are characterized by lack of proper housing, sanitation and infrastructure and by high rates of insecurities, violence and unemployment. In the settlements of Korogocho and Viwandani, the majority of households (over 80%) are food insecure and are dependent on street vendors where hygiene is a safety concern. Moreover, 40% of food in informal markets is wasted because of poor infrastructure.

FSL Nairobi tomatoes
FSL Nairobi: tomato street vendor

Nevertheless, several opportunities exist to address these challenges. The Food System Lab in Nairobi focuses on urban farming, which will make healthy food accessible to urban dwellers and addressing food safety through engaging food vendors. Through the Food System Lab activities, a number of urban poor residents will be engaged in urban farming, inclusiveness of women and youth will be extended, and use of modern technology will be amplified.


Specific objectives

  1.   To promote small-scale crop and livestock farming
  2.  To improve dietary diversity and hygienic handling of food among vendors and households
  3. To empower women and youth by providing avenues to actively participate in urban agriculture


  1. Implementing small-space farming (livestock and crop) in community spaces and schools
  2. Establishing a learning hub to ensure transfer of knowledge and create awareness
  3. Improving basic infrastructure for food vendors, including control of dust, access to safe water, improving drainage and waste management systems
  4. Exploring the use of local technologies to preserve food among the vendors

Korogocho, Kenya

Viwandani, Kenya