Mastercard Foundation targets 3m youth in agric value chain

The MasterCard Foundation
  • places 70% focus on young women

The Mastercard Foundation has rolled out an ambitious target of reaching up to three million youth in Ghana, with an intention to inspire and support their interests and participation in agriculture, Programme Lead-Agriculture Primary Production at MasterCard Foundation, Daniel Ninson, has disclosed.

Almost 70 percent of the target, according to Mr. Ninson, will be young women who participate in the agribusiness value chain.

Speaking in a plenary session on agriculture and agribusiness at the maiden Youth Economic Forum (YEF) in Accra yesterday, Mr. Ninson explained that MasterCard is influencing youth-interest with the design of the Foundation’s programmes.

“MasterCard Foundation is leveraging technology in order to provide these opportunities in the sector for the youth, as agriculture is at the centre of what we do,” he said.

With agriculture and agribusiness occupying 80-90 percent of the Foundation’s programme portfolio, Mr. Ninson however noted that the MasterCard Foundation has identified 13 value chains in the sector which have been categorised into four – tree crops, cereals and legumes, animal production and horticulture.

“What we have tried to do in the various value chains is mapping the various opportunities that we believe we can unlock to provide chances for young people and entrepreneurs who are looking forward to making impacts in the agribusiness chain,” he noted.

Indeed, the Foundation’s programming is currently focusing on three key things: which include provision of capacity building, access to finance and access to market for young agriculture entrepreneurs.

Meanwhile, CEO-Oceans Mall, Caroline Pomeyie – who was on the panel, asked organisations such as the MasterCard Foundation to direct more assistance to the fisheries sector in terms of capacity building and funding.

She said the fisheries sector, which is a very lucrative sector, needs the support of all stakeholders to thrive.

“The fisheries value chain is still at a rudimentary level, and we have to prioritise development of the sector through deepened application of technology for ease of doing business,” she said.

Ocean Mall leverages technology advancements to build an end to end supply chain platform in Ghana’s fisheries sector, while contributing significantly to reducing food loss and waste.

The company currently deploys basic technologies that facilitate growth and enhancement of the fisheries supply chain.

Equally, Caroline Amanor, CEO-Maku Foods Enterprise who was on the panel, underscored the need for young people to remain resilient while undertaking business in the agribusiness value chain.

Ms. Amanor said focus and determination is the only way to success given the rarity of sponsorship that comes from organisations.

She also called on MasterCard Foundation to further deepen and boost support for agribusiness entrepreneurs in order to whip-up more interest in the value chain.

The YEF, which is on the theme ‘Youth Voices & Action for Economic Growth, Resilience and Empowerment’, preceded this year’s Ghana Economic Forum (GEF) that officially begins today October 25, 2022.


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