In West and Central Africa, approximately 70 percent of women work in agriculture, according to a report from U.N. Women, but gaps still remain in their access to land, finance, technology, and markets. The international nonprofit CORAF is working to change this by offering women farmers trainings and additional resources.
As Africa’s largest sub-regional research organization, CORAF—which stands for the West and Central Africa Council for Agricultural Research and Development—offers a database of gender-sensitive technologies that reduce labor and are low-cost. They also offer training opportunities, designed with women’s needs and preferences in mind, to assist with seed production, distribution, storage, and planting.
These programs and techniques are important not only for leveling the playing field, but are also essential for solving global hunger in sub-Saharan Africa, a recent op-ed argues. The region is home to one of the fastest growing populations in the world, yet one-third of the population is under-nourished.
Fortunately, emerging networks are leading the way toward women empowerment and will prove essential to ending the cycle of poverty and food insecurity. These solutions are not only aimed at increasing access to resources, but are also ensuring that new interventions are developed by and for women.
Read more about these new initiatives and programs as well as the importance of investing in women in agriculture in the op-ed HERE.
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Photo courtesy of Annie Spratt, Unsplash