Mariculture is a branch of aquaculture that involves culture of aquatic organisms under marine environment.
Kwetu is a recognized pioneer of mariculture in Kenyan Coast in collaboration with The Moi University, CORDIO East Africa and Kenya Marine Fisheries and Research Institute–Mombasa KeMFRI.
Aims at conserving the environment and utilizing the natural resources sustainably through silvofishery initiatives. Mariculture technologies at KWETU have benefitted youth groups, women groups and artisan fishermen to improve their livelihoods at the same time conserving our environment. Mangrove forests being an important component within marine ecosystems have faced degradation due to its multiple benefits. Lack of awareness among the local communities surrounding the mangroves aggravates the situation. It is with this background that KWETU initiates awareness campaigns on the importance of conserving this ecosystem and advocating for community participation in conservation.
Activities under this department employ various approaches: conservation, informative research, demonstration sites, and community capacity building.The department also does environmental awareness creation and education in schools.
This is the core project of Kwetu under the mariculture department.
Initiatives under this project focus on practicing silvofisheries (culturing/rearing of aquatic organisms and tendering of aquatic plants especially mangrove forests), pond culturing and mangrove conservation, beekeeping, environmental education and conservation in schools, advocating for the rights of artisanal fisher community, and provision of research opportunities by local and international tertiary institutions.
As a poverty eradication and life standard improvement initiative along the Kenyan Coast, Kwetu in collaboration with various development partners has been able to reach out to communities living along the Coastal areas from South Coast (Shimoni) to North Coast (Ngomeni), practicing pond culturing and mangrove conservation as a supplement of traditional fishing methods.
Currently, over 15 community groups are being supported on Silvofisheries activities where beekeeping is also integrated to maximize utilization of the mangrove wetlands.
In association with school environmental clubs, we conduct environmental education and conservation in schools through trainings, outreaches, debates and other creative field activities that allow students to actively participate and contribute to the initiative.
This project seeks to demonstrate ecotourism as a source of livelihoods for the community.
Ecotourism projects help in balancing use and conservation of natural resources as communities could derive benefits from their conservation efforts.
Activities under this project include fish culture on earthen ponds constructed on bare inter tidal sand flats, mangrove nursery establishment, and board walk within mangroves.
Kwetu has a 133m board walk that facilitates access to mud crab cages providing opportunities for enabling refreshing nature walks within mangroves while enjoying cool breeze and clean air.
Despite being a frequent tourist destination for both domestic and international tourists, the board walk also provides an ideal site for educational tours for primary, secondary, higher learning institutions and student exchange programs.
The uniqueness of Kwetu Mangrove Ecotourism boardwalk is based on the presence of two species of mangrove, beautiful sunset view, birds view, monkeys present, fish ponds, eco-products from Neem, Aloe vera, honey and lastly close eco and cultural community touristic sites (Mtwapa Tourism Circuit).
The location of the organization adds value to this ecotourism project.
Kwetu is located 7 km from the main Mtwapa town about 20 minutes drive along the murram road,that passes across Mtomondoni village viewing the mangrove forest on the Mtwapa creek.
The journey provides a vast opportunity to see the mixed and traditional Mijikenda settlements.