Three hundred women farmers, women-led agribusiness and women farmers living with disabilities have taken part in the 4th edition of Women in Food and Agricultrual Leadership Forum (WOFAGRIC) and the Gold in Soil Awards in Takoradi.
The two-day training forum on the theme: ‘Agriwoman: grow-recover-stand out’ discussed technical and field demonstration on how to use appropriate application of equipment, one-on-one mentorships, empowerment talks, case study presentation on modules, and practices that could be beneficial to women, and hands-on educational opportunity for learning about farm safety, financial management, nutrition, markets, exports, investments, among others.
The WOFAGRIC is to encourage more women to participate in the sector, especially women with disability. The Gold in the Soil Awards has also impacted the lives of many women in agribusiness.
The forum had partners and sponsors from the Western Regional Coordinating Council (WRCC), Canada, Yara Ghana, Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA), and Women in Agricultural Development (WIAD).
Ms. Alberta Nana Akyaa Akosa Sarpong, Executive Director of Agrihouse Foundation, explained that the Western Region has played host to the fourth event, and that Volta, Ashanti and Upper East Regions have had their turns in the previous years.
She pointed out that series of events have been lined up to empower the woman farmer with disability, grow the economy and also improve livelihoods, especially women in the rural areas.
She noted that women with disabilities are making great strides in agriculture.
According to her, these hard-working women farmers need a push to excel in their businesses and entrepreneurship.
Over the past three years, Ms. Sarpong said, the event has brought over 2,000 women farmers to one stage where knowledge, ideas and relevant skills required for business expansion and development are bequeathed to participants within the agric value chain.
“This is a demonstration of a paradigm shift in agro-economy to influence policy, and also ensure sustainable growth along the agribusiness value chain. Let us challenge ourselves to be the best. Let us, as women, make waves in Agriculture,” she said.
Kati Csaba, Canadian High Commissioner to Ghana and Sierra Leone said her country supports agriculture initiatives for women farmer-based organisations in post-production, processing and extension services.
She stated that there are economic empowerment and gender equality specific programmes to help girls realise their human rights.
“You are the backbone of agriculture in your regions and throughout Ghana. Ghana’s progress is being driven by your work, and I want to encourage you to continue although I recognise that the burden on your shoulders is heavy; challenges may come your way as you face the hurdles, but through perseverance and hard work, you will be successful,” she added.
Mr. Danquah Addo-Yobo, West Africa Regional Director of Yara, described the programme as an initiative to get more people into agriculture.
She commended organisers of the programme for encouraging more women to venture into agriculture.