European Development Days: conclusions on FOs role in women farmers’ economic empowerment
AgriCord partnered with FAO -hosted Forest and Farm Facility in a panel discussion on rural women in decision-making and entrepreneurship: forest and farm producer organisations and cooperatives have solutions. Trias, one of AgriCord’s member agri-agencies, was present with a stand “A unique path towards gender equality. Challenging social norms to achieve transformative change”, which illustrated gender-sensitizing of coffee value chain in El Salvador.
The European Development Days (EDD) 2018 focused on the important role that women and girls play in the sustainable development. This leading European forum on international cooperation and development organized by the European Commission in Brussels on 5-6 June mobilized some 8,000 specialists in development cooperation, including high-level guests and speakers from governments, international organisations and civil society alike.
The approach to focus on women, farming and forests provides opportunities to environment and sustainable use of natural resources. Opening remarks by Bernard Crabbé, DEVCO (C2) Environment, Natural resources, Water
Free resources are available but women need skills and confidence to take advantage of them. (Agro-)forestry offers good health, good earnings and clean environment. Forestry business does not need important capital to start off, seedlings are not perishable etc and therefore it is a good way for women to engage in entrepreneurship. Jennipher Handoondo, tree growing farmer, Tree Nursery Choma Association, Zambia
Economic barriers to women’s agro-business development are more and more addressed by the farmers’ organisations, but one should not forget social norms as an obstacle for entrepreneurship. Trias’ gender trajectory supports farmers’ organizations to build inclusive value chains to enhance economic empowerment and livelihood opportunities of women farmers and rural youth. Men and women are equal partners in their family farm business. Januario Ntungwa, Country Coordinator, Trias, Uganda
Charity Kathambi is a champion of forestry and a Member of Parliament in Kenya, who has been supported by her local community to leadership. As a national level policymaker, she is calling for solutions on land issues, deforestation, sustainable sources of energy, availability of clean water, and protection of girls and women. She is seeking to empower women farmer groups to do awareness-raising to enhance women’s entrepreneurship and business opportunities. She is lobbying and working to establish linkages for women to support each other, and on capacity building in agro-business, on disaster risk reduction, climate change etc. Women are the most affected. http://www.fao.org/fao-stories/article/en/c/1136233/
Attracting young women to agribusiness is crucial for global food security. World Farmers Organisation’s Women’s Committee works on exchanging experiences and good practice. Women farmers are sent to international platforms to speak for themselves. Awareness-raising is very important to keep main hindrances and barriers on the agenda. It consists of highlighting the entrepreneurship. Agriculture must be economically sustainable. Women entrepreneurs are especially vulnerable, as they cater for their families and for income/business. The Committee works to improve the position of (women) farmers in the value chain: the key for the food security is in maximizing the potential of women farmers. Kati Partanen, Chair of Women’s Committee, World Farmers Organisation
For more details and pictures: https://eudevdays.eu/community/sessions/230/forests-and-farms-womens-bus...