Baringo County, Great Rift Valley, Kenya
Baringo County is located in Kenya’s Rift Valley region and includes 5 constituencies: Baringo Central, Baringo East, Eldama Ravine, Baringo East and Mogotio. It borders Turkana and Samburu Counties to the North, Laikipia County to the East, Nakuru County to the South and Kericho, Nandi, Uasin Gishu, Elgeyo Marakwet and West Pokot Counties to the West. Its headquarter and largest town is Kabarnet. The county is home to Lake Baringo.
Baringo County is one of Kenya’s 47 counties and has a total population of over 800,000 people, with 320,000 between the ages of 3–17; the population is expected to grow by more than 120,000 people by 2030. Baringo County is among the marginalized counties in Kenya with a poverty incidence of 52.2% against 45.2% nationally, and a dependency ratio of 107.2. 21,541 children of primary school age, and 55% of secondary school age youth in the county are out of school. 16% of the population has a secondary level of education or above, 48% have primary education, 36% of the population has no formal education.
Baringo County is largely inhabited by the Tugen and Pokot people, which are subtribes of the Kalenjin people. Christianity is the most practiced religion in the county. Traditionally, Baringo people believed in a Supreme Being known as Asis, who is represented by the sun.
The economy of Baringo County is mainly agro-based. The main food crops grown are maize, pigeon peas, beans, Irish potatoes, sweet potatoes, sorghum, cassava and finger millet while the cash crops are coffee, cotton, macadamia and pyrethrum. Livestock products include honey, beef, mutton as well as hides and skins.
Baringo County has 687 primary schools, 601 of them are public and 86 are private schools. There are a total of 159 secondary schools; 147 public and 12 private secondary schools. Secondary schools include Kabarnet High School, Solian Girls, Baringo High School, Kapropita High School, and Kituro High School, Tabagon Girls, Pemwai Girls, and Tenges Boys. Kabarnet town hosts a number of university campuses including those of Baringo University, Mount Kenya University, Egerton University, and Kisii University.