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Empowerment of Women in Agriculture: Mapping Study on On-Going Initiatives in Selected Countries in Africa

Mrs. Folasade Ayonrinde, PhD on behalf of the ACBF EWA Team
2 Fairbairn Drive Mt. Pleasant, ACBF Boardroom
09 May, 2014
11:00 – 13:00 Hrs


The inherent threats to Africa’s low agricultural growth and global competitiveness cannot be delinked from the demographics of the sector – the dominant role of women as the key agents.  Despite the role and impact of women in African Agriculture, there’s still an unsettling disparity in the support they receive compared to men.  Accordingly, the Empowering Women in Agriculture Initiative (EWA) was launched at the 19th AU Summit in 2012 to support women farmers by promoting their access to key resources (land, finance, technology).  The initiative has the support of several African Heads of states as well as major private sector partners – Mo Ibrahim Foundation, Africa 2.0, Gender is My Agenda (GIMAC), Africa Media Initiative (AMI) and Femmes Africa Solidarite (FAS), under the coordination of the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF). 

One of the activities undertaken to move the initiative forward is a study commissioned in 2013 to take a more in-depth and comparative look at specific problems facing women farmers in selected (pilot) countries; and to identify existing initiatives aimed at women farmers in these countries in order to build a framework for assessing the extent that they promote their empowerment. The primary goal of the study is to provide strategic information and guidance that will assist the Partners to better grasp and contextualize the gaps in the empowerment of women in agriculture in selected countries, for necessary, targeted intervention.

Several gaps have been highlighted in the pilot with a view to carving potential niche for EWA initiatives to fill the gaps.  As the Foundation is to report back to the Champions through the Chair (H.E, President Sirleaf of Liberia), the purpose of this presentation is to shed light on the EWA study and solicit contributions on the way forward to ensure good design and successful implementation of the project. How should the Foundation go about the development of the project document and how can it present policy options and guidelines for governments at country and regional levels in addressing the needs of women in agriculture in Africa.

Thomas Kwesi Quartey

ACBF has been granted the status of a specialized agency because of the potential to transform Africa through capacity development.

H.E. Thomas Kwesi Quartey, Deputy Chairperson, AU Commission
Erastus Mwencha

The recognition of ACBF as the African Union’s Specialized Agency for Capacity Development launches the beginning of a new era for capacity building by ACBF, which will require an appropriate level of political commitment and financial support from all stakeholders.

H.E. Erastus Mwencha, Chair, ACBF Executive Board
Lamin Momodou

The remarkable achievements ACBF has registered over the past 26 years is not by accident in our opinion. They have come through hard work, dedication, commitment, purposeful leadership, support from the member countries as well as productive partnership building.

Mr. Lamin Momodou MANNEH, Director, UNDP Regional Service Centre for Africa
Goodall Gondwe

Africa needs ACBF as much, probably more now, than at the time it was created in 1991.

Hon. Goodall Gondwe, former Chair of the ACBF Board of Governors and Minister of Finance – Malawi
Ken Ofori Atta

Ghana’s partnership with ACBF is a tremendous blessing for us and therefore the opportunity for Ghana to host the 26th ACBF Board of Governors Meeting is something that we treasure.

Hon Ken Ofori Atta, Chair of the ACBF Board of Governors and Minister of Finance - Ghana