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PD/A CRSP Aquanews-Summer 2002

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Kenya’s Director of Fisheries Department Visits the US

Kenya Fisheries Department Director Nancy Gitonga at AFS meeting in Baltimore earlier this year.

Photo By: Steve Sempier

By Steve Sempier

ancy Gitonga, Director of the Kenya Department of Fisheries, recently returned home after spending several weeks in the United States. Highlights of her trip included attending an American Fisheries Society (AFS) conference, visiting with United States Agency for International Development (USAID) officials, and touring several US universities and fish farms.

Gitonga gave a well-received poster presentation at the 132nd Annual Meeting of the American Fisheries Society. The poster focused on aquaculture development in Kenya. Gitonga attended the meeting, which took place from 18 to 22 August 2002 in Baltimore, Maryland. During the meeting she met many current and potential future PD/A CRSP collaborators. In addition, she attended numerous presentations that addressed fisheries issues and challenges that also face Kenyan fisheries.

After the AFS meeting, Gitonga traveled to Washington, DC. At USAID, she gave a presentation titled, "The Role of Aquaculture in Fisheries Development in Kenya." The USAID officials who attended the 23 August 2002 presentation expressed great interest in the subject.

In addition to Gitonga’s time in Baltimore and Washington, she spent time at The Ohio State University in Columbus and at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. These visits allowed Gitonga to spend time at US universities that are collaborating with the CRSP and expand the Kenya Department of Fisheries network. While in Arkansas, Gitonga also visited several aquaculture farms that cultured a variety of species. She noted the similarities and differences between these farms and farms in Kenya. Those tours may open up more doors for opportunities in Kenya.

Gitonga’s CRSP-sponsored trip was a success as she was able to both build upon and strengthen her network of US contacts in the fisheries and aquaculture field. In addition, she was able to share concerns and successes related to aquaculture in Kenya and foster interest in pursuing aquaculture research in this region of Africa.

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