24 November 2017
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Saturday, 04 November 2017 19:52

Agribusiness a tool for empowerment of rural women and youths

Written by  Aaron Banda
women like these need to get economically empowered women like these need to get economically empowered

Mchinji, November 4, 2017: Circle for Integrated Community Development (CICOD) challenged rural women and youths to practice business in agricultural production.

CICOD Project Officer in Kasungu, Joseph Nthondo said women and youths are having limited job opportunities and this is why the organization is exploring various ways of tackling unemployment by engaging them in the agriculture sector.

The sentiments were made on Friday during the learning visit where 13 youth clubs from Kasungu who visited Mchinji to learn what other cooperatives are doing in agribusiness and value addition.

“We are enhancing organizational capacity among members to increase their capacity to participate in agricultural trade and one of the strategies we are using is learning visits because we noticed that cooperatives here in Mchinji have got experience and they are advanced in terms of interventions,” he said.

“We are implementing a project called Kasungu youths in agribusiness with funds from Ox-Farm Ireland through Ox-farm Malawi,” Nthondo added.

Among the cooperatives the team visited was Kasekese Farmers’ and Marketing Cooperative Society in Traditional Authority Kapondo, a cooperative composed of 52 women and 13 men.

Chairperson for Kasekese Cooperative, Robert Gerevasio Banda said in 2016 the cooperative received peanut butter making machine from Church Action and Relief Aid (Card) for value addition.

The cooperative is producing milk from soya beans after it received the milk bulking machine this year from Feed the Children Agritive.

“The cooperative indeed is creating income generating opportunities for women and youths through agribusiness activities focusing on production and processing (value addition). We farm legumes which include maize, beans, soya beans and ground nuts,’ he disclosed.

Banda added that the cooperative is facing challenges in identifying potential markets for different farming products that would be produced by the youth and women farmers.

Other cooperatives the team visited were Machichi in the area of Traditional Authority Simphasi and Mikonga in Traditional Authority Dambe.

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