What happens to pastoral children when the last goat dies: Ann’s story

ILRI-duckrabbit photofilm: Ann's Story

ILRI-duckrabbit photofilm on the impacts of a 2009 drought in Kenya on Maasai children in the Kitengela rangelands, outside Nairobi (website image credit: duckrabbit).

What’s it like for a pastoral family in Africa to lose all their animals? What will the livestock peoples of the Horn do in the aftermath of this year’s devastating drought, which is sending so many into poverty?

We can get a glimpse from this 2-minute photofilm/photo-testimony of Ann Aiyaki, an adolescent Maasai schoolgirl whose family fled to Kitengela in 2009, and whose life changed when the rains failed and the animals died.


Similar to so many tens of thousands of Somali herding families on the march today in search of food and refuge from the ongoing drought in the Horn of Africa, many of Kenya’s pastoralists in a great, previous, drought of 2009 were forced to move. We met Ann Aiyaki and her family in the Kitengela Maasai rangelands just outside of Nairobi. This is her story of how the drought affected her life.

We used to keep livestock. Our lives were very different then.’—Ann Aiyaki

This photofilm was produced during a week-long photofilm training course led by duckrabbit’s Benjamin Chesterton and David White at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), in Nairobi, Kenya. The audio and production was led by ILRI staff Muthoni Njiru, Julius Nyangaga and Tezira Lore. The photos are by ILRI’s Muthoni Njiru, Julius Nyangaga and Tezira Lore and duckrabbit photographer David White. With special thanks to David Chesterton for his passion and talent in helping ILRI conceptualize, make and finalize this film, and to David White for his extraordinary photographic generosity. We thank both for their uncommon ability to give others confidence in using their talents to make a bigger difference.

About duckrabbit
Duckrabbit is an award-winning digital production company that in documentary audio, still photography and video to make compelling film and audio narratives for commercial, charity and broadcast clients.  They also train photographers, videographers, journalists and communications professionals in audio-visual storytelling and online strategic communications.

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