Portrait de Madalitso Chidumu
Madalitso
Chidumu

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Portrait de Madalitso Chidumu

 

 

Eliminating gender inequalities and ensuring that men and women have access to same productive resources, same access to financing mechanisms, and other opportunities is key to reducing food insecurity and ending hunger. To achieve this it requires strong political will from governments. Commitments that should manifest in policy responses that adresses gender inequalities in agricultural and rural sector and the specific challenges rural women face.

So the Bank can actually work with governments to facilitate the intergration of gender equality and women empowerment issues into national food security policies, programmes legislation and investment strategies. 

Inorder to get more political will to address the challenges again is to support the capacity development of governements to formulate evidence based, gender equitable food security policies.

Madalitso Chidumu (2014 AWARD fellow)
Farmer & Founder of Impact AIIC
Malawi

Portrait de Madalitso Chidumu

 

 

In designing programs that can help the bank to address some of the challenges women face in finnacing its important for the bank to consider some of the effects that can come with direct financing women in agribusiness. It was dicussed in earier phases that at times, the money that women handles are not necesarrily used by them, men are seen to overcome the women, and involve themselves in planning and usage of the women money. so to some extent direct financing has its own disadvantage because we are not even sure if indeed the money will be used for its intended use. one strategy that other stekeholders have used is to  finance women in agribusiness in kind. for example, construction of processing facilities, procurement of machinery this helps to ensure that men dont take advantage if the financing mechanism comes in hard cash.

another aspect to consider is male involvement in financing. most projects that aim at building a gender gap havent been succesiful because men have been sidelined. Men should also be put at the center. A project should strat with problem tree identification which should be done at community level where even men participate and they acknowledge theres a problem which can be filled through financing and that they are willing to help their female partners to be empowered to produce for the market etc

Madalitso Chidumu (2014 AWARD fellow)
Farmer & Founder of Impact AIIC
Malawi

Portrait de Madalitso Chidumu

Most challenges that women face in regards to agricultural financing and their causes have been discussed alot but just to share that, stakeholders and private sector have come up with a way to still invove women in agri financing and one of that ways is through Group financing. Women are told to be in groups and through the groups are able to access agricultural finance. 

This approach has seen the percentage of women accessing finance increasing from the base line. Its something that can and should be promoted because the its a fact that most women dont own land and major assests and at the same time, the private sector is in business, they also assess their risk.

So promoting the groups approach is one of the actions to be taken

Madalitso Chidumu (2014 AWARD fellow)
Farmer & Founder of Impact AIIC
Malawi

Portrait de Madalitso Chidumu

AFDB, can promote Public  Private Partnerships that will mostly benefit women in agribusiness and agro processing indusries by directly inducing these Public Private Partnerships. Most of the times, PPPs are not just born, its either they are Public led, or Company led or Donor led. Despite how the  PPP came about, women who mostly do not meet the requirements of a commercial farmer interms of quality, quantity, capacity  etc have a chance to benefit from PPP's trainings, infrastructure development etc. a god example is that in Malawi there was a technical working group on Private sector led extension delivery that was developed and championed by Government ministry. Through this approach, most PPPs were created, and we saw private seed companies partnering with Civil societies to actually have smallholder farmers especially women grow seed for the companies. extension was provided by the compaies with support from government field workers. This saw women doubling their incomes in priority value chains. 

So PPP is a way to go. we shouldnt force our women farmers to be everything in the value chain. Every player in a value chain is very important if we are to remove inefficiencies in a chain. however, issues like technology, infrastracture, capital that women face can easily be delt with in a model PPP approach. 

Once again, my point is, AFDB can have a deliberate approach in its initiatives to target private sector or PPP inorder to benefit a female farmer in a value chain. 

Madalitso Chidumu (2014 AWARD fellow)
Farmer & Founder of Impact AIIC
Malawi

Portrait de Madalitso Chidumu

This is a very interesting topic. In the past women have been involved in valeu addition projects and projects that promotes access to markets. My Opinion is that, Value addition comes with entrepreneurial skills and business management skills. most intervations that we implement have forced rural women to go into businesses simply because it is a project. Again projects have gone on the groung and mobilised farmers into cooperatives simply bacause it is a project that will work with cooperatives. As a result, we have cooperatives in the community that are not vibrant and just on paper. And we have value addition projects that phase out after the project has phased out. I am an entrepreneurship and a business trainer and in my opinion, Intervations, such as these are better handled by women or anybody that are already doing something little on their own, but require a hand to upscale because the entrepreneurial spirit is already there. But most initiatives has formed new cooperatives with people that are only interested in the hand outs yet when the project phases out the initiative goes as well. Lets rethink our approaches if the women that we target with an intervation, have potential to scale it beyond project and play a meangful role in a value chain.

Madalitso Chidumu (2014 AWARD fellow)
Farmer & Founder of Impact AIIC
Malawi

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