Co-creation for better animal health

 

Since 2018, Making More Health (MMH) has supported the community in Bungoma County, Western Kenya, through numerous social projects. Various activities have also been carried out with local farmers to support them in their work. Besides building a school and a kindergarten for the children of the community, many farmers took part in our training in soap production and hygiene. In rural areas in particular, farmers are facing major challenges - many smallhold farmers cannot protect their animals from diseases and infections, which seriously threatens their livelihoods, because farming is the only source of income for many families. While connecting our MMH activities to the Boehringer Ingelheim LastMile initiative in Webuye, now also the local farmers in the MMH area are trained regularly in animal disease prevention. This helps them to raise their awareness and knowledge on animal health and to grow their income.

Established by Boehringer Ingelheim, with support from the Global Alliance for Livestock Veterinary Medicines (GALVmed) and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, LastMile aims to bridge current gaps in access, availability, and awareness of animal healthcare solutions for smallholder farmers in Africa. The program's mission is to create long-lasting partnerships with the local farming community in an effort to establish and drive sustainable businesses that are integrated into the wider national economy. It was initially launched in Kenya, and other key markets throughout Africa including Cameroon, Nigeria, Mali, Burkina Faso and Ethiopia, with a plan to expand to Tanzania, amongst others.

“Having been involved in the LastMile initiative as Project Management Office lead since it started in 2018, it’s been a great experience to see the growing interest and excitement by both BI internal and external parties. This support has helped to move ahead despite some challenges intrinsic to the nature of the project.  If solving the animal health awareness, accessibility and availability barriers that LastMile aims to solve was easy, it would have been done before! I look forward to the next stages of the project, which will focus on ensuring its long-term sustainability.”  (Laura Arribas, Senior Consultant at Archipel&Co working in LastMile as PMO lead since July 2018)

This co-creation between LastMile and our ongoing activities in Bungoma County shows how the MMH ecosystem approach works. Together and with joint efforts, we can make social innovation and more health happen in a holistic and sustainable way.

“The Last Mile is an inspiring project with a clear mission of improving the livelihoods of many farmers across several countries in Africa. For thousands of people in this continent, their livestock is the most valued asset, and the only way to feed their families and generate some income . The support and training we are giving to these communities through the Last Mile project is making huge difference for them, which is reflected in more healthier and consequently, more productive animals. From a Boehringer Ingelheim perspective, Last Mile is also contributing to increase the sustainability of our business in Africa, improving our capabilities and our presence in this challenging region by delivering the best solutions for our customers”. (Tiago Teixeira, Business Segment Head Ruminants META Boehringer Ingelheim)