In January 2024, Dr. Kevin Miheso started his position as Country Director of VSF-Suisse in South Sudan. In this interview, Kevin tells us a little about himself, how he came to work at VSF-Suisse and the challenges that the region will face in the upcoming years.

Hello Kevin, tell us a little something about yourself and where you are from.

I was born in Vihiga County, western part of Kenya, approximately 400 kilometers from Kenya’s capital, Nairobi. I grew up on a farm and attended public schools, acquiring a government scholarship to pursue University education, where I completed a bachelor’s degree in Veterinary Medicine at the University of Nairobi. After finishing my undergraduate degree, I was offered a scholarship at the same institution to pursue a master’s degree in Veterinary Science (Pathology and Diagnostics). I was also able to complete another short course at the same institution in Project Planning, Publishing and Grant Management. I started my leadership roles at a young age in both primary and high school, where I was a school prefect in primary school and rose to the rank of a deputy school captain in high school. At university I was the representative of the Veterinary Students Association.

What was your Dream Job when you were little?

I had a passion of becoming a doctor, which is why I became a veterinary surgeon / pathologist. When I was about 9 years old I facilitated the removal of a bone which had been stuck in the mouth of my pet dog for a week, and one community animal health worker who was a relative jokingly said I would become a veterinarian.

How did you come to be in the field of international cooperation?

My first engagement with an international organization was during my first-year at university, where we were engaged in a project that was supporting smallholder farmers in informal settlements within Nairobi. I then had my first international assignment after my graduation in Tanzania, where I supported the setting up of poultry farms. Later on, I got a job in South Sudan, where I have gained valuable experience in international cooperation. I actually applied for the position of VSF-Suisse South Sudan Country Director in 2014, though I didn’t have the requisite experience then. This dream would later be realized after 10 years!

When did you first start working at VSF-Suisse?

I started working with VSF Suisse in 2016 as a Program Manager.

What are you most looking forward to in your new position as country director?

I look forward to spearheading the organization in supporting vulnerable populations, who have endured years of civil strife and continue to grapple with climatic extremes, achieve durable solutions.

What are the biggest challenges for South Sudan and other countries in the region?

Conflict, climatic extremes and shrinking donor landscape, despite increasing humanitarian needs.

How do you see VSF-Suisse’s future role in this regard?

It is the organization of choice through strategic programs that can support people through durable and sustainable solutions.

And what do you see as VSF-Suisse’s greatest strength?

Our unique animal health expertise, a highly experienced and dedicated team and our strong grassroots networks and community goodwill.

What is your passion besides work? Any hobbies?

Poultry farming has been my passion, I swim quite often and I love music.

Thank you, Kevin, and all the best!

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