KickStart is a Kenya based non-profit social enterprise with the mission to lift millions of people in Africa out of poverty quickly, cost-effectively and sustainably.

Recognizing that 80% of the rural poor in Africa are smallholder farmers, KickStart realized that it could have the biggest impacts by designing a tool that would enable poor farmers to earn more money. To that end, KickStart designs, promotes and mass-markets irrigation pumps that smallholder farmers buy to start profitable family farming businesses, increasing their incomes, food security, and lifting themselves out of poverty.

KickStart’s MoneyMaker branded pumps are low-cost, highly efficient, and human powered. These innovative, easy to install, operate and maintain pumps enable farmers to pull water from shallow wells (up to 25 feet deep) or surface sources to irrigate as much as 2 acres of land per day.

With irrigation, farmers attain better yields and achieve 3-4 crop cycles per year instead of just 1-2. Poor farmers who adopt KickStart’s pumps are able to grow and sell crops all year long, especially during the long “hungry season” when food prices are highest. Within 36 months, on average, these households increase their farm incomes from $150/year to $850/year (nearly a 500% increase) and take a first major step out of poverty. For the first time, they can properly feed and educate their children, improve food security for themselves and their communities, and have money left over to plan for their futures.

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Facts and Figures

  • 1 year project
  • 723 OTBF Money Maker Pumps sold
  • 3,075 people out of poverty
  • 615 profitable enterprises created
  • Up to 50,000 will have the needed amount of vegetables and fruit for a year
  • 4,255 farmers trained on irrigation