Farmerline Hosts Workshops for Women in Agriculture

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The Women Advancing Agriculture (WAA) Initiative builds on Farmerline’s existing technology and business model to effectively advocate for increased gender equality and access to information for women in Ghana.

More than half of the Ghanaian population is involved in agriculture. Yet many female agricultural workers lack sufficient access to work opportunities, modern farming techniques, land ownership and formal financing due to the disparity between gender roles in the household.

As only 29% of women living in the Northern rural regions of Ghana are literate, Farmerline has recently launched the Women Advancing Agriculture (WAA) Initiative, which will send educational voice messages in local languages directly to the mobile phones of female agricultural workers. Audio content will be location-specific and provide actionable information on best farming practices, regional market prices, weather forecasts, maternal health and financial literacy. The goal is to ultimately improve the yields and incomes of female agricultural workers by providing convenient access to education on agronomy, how to gain formal financing, and relevant family planning methods.

On 16-17 February, #TeamFarmerline travelled to the Upper West region of Ghana in order to host three educational workshops for women in agriculture. Farmerline, along with participating speakers from MEDATigo and DKT International, visited the villages of Loogu, Grupie and Nyoli with a vision of effectively advocating the benefits of locally available services for women in Ghana such as mobile money payments, family planning and Farmerline’s educational voice messages on agronomy, health and finance.

180 women participated in the WAA workshops over the course of two days.

Farmerline is anticipating a fast-growing network of female farmers across Ghana this year. To maximize outreach and the number of women receiving educational content, we invite potential partners to contact jessica@farmerline.org

To see the full WAA photo album, click here.

Farmerline was selected to showcase the WAA Initiative at UNESCO’s 2015 Mobile Learning Week in Paris, France on 25 February 2015.

To learn more about Farmerline, visit us at www.farmerline.org or follow us on social media @Farmerline

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Farmer Story #6 – Anna Deblu

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In December 2014, Farmerline and MEDA visited Vida and 40 other female smallholder farmers in the Lambusie-Karni district of Ghana.

Meet Anna Deblu, a soybean farmer out of in Piina, the Lambussie-Karni District in the Upper West Region of Ghana. Through Farmerline and MEDA’s GROW Project, which communicates agronomy audio content in local languages to women’s mobile phones, Anna has been able to increase her soybean production from three bowls per acre to an impressive 40 bowls per acre. She explains how her crops were initially negatively impacted by unpredictable rainfall patterns and insufficient information on the appropriate planting times during her last production season.

Farmerline aims to fill this information void faced by many smallholder farmers by communicating data on weather forecasts, best farming practices, financial tips, and market access directly to farmers’ mobile phones in the form of voice calls. In partnership with MEDA, Farmerline hopes to empower smallholder farmers, like Anna, across Ghana with timely and locally-relevant agricultural data.

Ghana’s growing economy is not evenly distributed amongst its people.  Food security continues to remain a serious challenge due to poor crop yields as a result of, among other things, poor access to improved agricultural information and weather. Farmerline innovative technology is key in addressing this deficit’. – Mohammed Abdul- Fatawu, Value Chain Officer I MEDA Ghana.

Stay tuned as #Farmerline continues to tell the stories of small-scale farmers in Ghana over the upcoming months.

To learn more about the initiative, visit us at www.farmerline.org or follow us on social media @farmerline

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Farmer Story #5 – Vida Baazaantaayele

Did you know that half of Ghana’s female population is in agriculture?

 

Vida Baazaantaayele is a soybean farmer in Piina, Wa. This past farming season, Vida suffered heavily from post-harvest losses due to insufficient storage facilities. Farmerline and MEDA’s GROW Project have launched a partnership in order to educate women in the Northern region of Ghana on food security and sustainable households. The hope is to address challenges such as Vida’s through filling the knowledge gap.

In December 2014, Farmerline and MEDA visited Vida and 40 other female smallholder farmers in the Lambusie-Karni district of Ghana. Workshops such as these are encouraging for women to form their own farming associations, a critical means of support for many women independently working in agriculture. Not only do farming associations allow farmers to collectively negotiate competitive prices, but it also opens the communication lines to provide a greater sense of community among those living and working together in the same district.

Over the course of the workshop, Vida took Farmerline to show her method of drying soybeans. During this time together, Farmerline was able to teach Vida new, simple techniques for storing and drying soybeans in order to reach optimum levels of moisture and greater yields. Techniques included running your hands through the grains and storing grains above the floor.

Vida is one of 110 million African women making a living in agriculture. Farmerline supports small-scale farmers, like Vida, by sending agriculture-related information directly to farmers’ mobile phones in the form of voice calls.

Stay tuned as #Farmerline continues to tell the stories of small-scale farmers in Ghana over the upcoming months.

To learn more about the initiative, visit us at www.farmerline.org or follow us on social media @farmerline

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