The Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) has presented Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) worth GH¢20,000 and seed money of GH¢10,000 to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture to help agriculture extension officers and farmers mitigate possible impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The West Africa Head of AGRA, Mr. Foster K. Boateng who made the presentation on behalf of AGRA, staff and implementing partners at a ceremony in Accra said: “AGRA is raising additional funds to help farmers purchase seeds, fertiliser and other basic needs in the 2020 production season. The GH¢10,000 donated by AGRA is to kick-start donations to the fund”.
He urged other well-meaning Ghanaians and organisations to contribute to the fund. He also called on stakeholders such as the Chamber of Agribusiness to support the fund mobilisation and ensure farmers are able to produce enough food to feed the nation as it strives to recover from the impact of COVID-19.
Mr. Boateng added that: “Even though a lot of attention is being focused on the health sector, which is good, food security for the country is also paramount – especially at this time, and must be looked at”. He lauded the important role played by agriculture extension officers in contemporary times.
The PPE, which include gloves, hand-sanitisers and nose masks as well as Veronica buckets, will enable agriculture extension officers to go into the field and help farmers in the wake of COVID-19 to ensure that productivity is not negatively affected.
The Minister of Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto who received the donation, thanked AGRA for the gesture and described it as timely. He said: “AGRA is one of the few development partners who have been supporting the ministry to achieve its goals. This donation is an indication of the kind of support that AGRA has been giving ministry over the past three and a half years”.
AGRA has prepared a plan in response to a request to provide additional support for the Ministry of Food and Agriculture during the COVID-19 period. This will be implemented in the coming days.
Established in 2006, AGRA is an African-led, Africa-based and farmer-centred institution working to put smallholder farmers at the centre of the continent’s growing economy by transforming their farming from a solitary struggle for survival to a business that thrives. Working in collaboration with our partners including African governments, researchers, development partners, the private sector and civil society, AGRA’s work primarily focuses on smallholder farmers – men and women who typically cultivate staple crops on two hectares or less.
In the new strategy for 2017-2021, AGRA is supporting eleven African countries and 30 million smallholder farm households (150 million individuals) to increase their incomes and improve their food security.