The Resource Oriented Development Initiative program is working to rehabilitate prisoners by teaching them farming skills to enable them to earn a living once they are out of jail.
After serving his 5-year jail term in a Kenyan prison, Duncan Nderitu is now back at home growing maize and coffee on his three-acre plot.
Nderitu who was convicted in 2013 for handling stolen goods, is a beneficiary of a program that helps equip inmates with farming skills to enable them to become productive once they are out of prison.
"I trained on organic farming and mastered it very well. When I completed my jail term, I came back home and started practising organic farming. I turned it into a business that can help me support my family and stay away from crime so that I don't end up in prison again," said Duncan.
Duncan is also training community members on best farming practices, using the knowledge he acquired while in prison to teach others to grow food for their families and run profitable businesses.
"I was not harvesting anything from the farm but now I get a huge harvest. We are farming. What I can say is that I have seen firsthand that Duncan has reformed, and if he finds people who can support him, he will go far. He is working very hard, even the neighbours agree that he is working hard," said Beatrice Nderitu, Duncan's wife.
Kenya's government says it's working to turn prisons into rehabilitation centres rather than focusing on punishment.
The program known as RODI or Resource Oriented Development Initiative was started in 1999 by a local NGO to teach inmates about organic farming, animal husbandry and soap making.
The project is running in various prisons in the country. Over 1,300 inmates have graduated since the program began.
Inmates can also learn carpentry, tailoring, hairdressing and masonry work - among other skills - under other prison programs.
At the Nyeri Medium Security Prison in central Kenya inmates are learning about the spacing of crops in a small area today.
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Produce from the prison farm is used to feed inmates.
"I will leave with a lot of knowledge, I learnt many things through the program. I learnt how to sustain myself through farming so that I can have something to eat and also fend for my family. I am very grateful. I can say it's good I came to jail because I would not have accessed this information," said Zachary Muruiki, who is serving a sentence for illegally trading in marijuana.
"Only 4 percent you can imagine for nationwide – averages is that 40 percent of inmates come back to prison, but for our case, those we have been able to train only 4 percent come back to prison. That means those inmates who pass through our training, they are able to implement the skills they learn from here and also stay at home helping their families and also employing other youth and also contributing to crime prevention. So this program is helping inmates to reduce the re-offending rate and also trying also to prevent crime back at home," said RODI instructor, Peter Chege.
The project's founders say they are working to replicate the agriculture program in prisons countrywide to help fight crime and at the same time promote organic farming.