By Samuel Akapule, GNABongo-Soe (UE), March 20, GNA - Rural women farmers in some selected Communities in the Bongo District of the Upper East Region are to benefit from a new Food Security Project, dubbed, “Promoting Local Innovation for Food and Nutrition Security (Proli-FaNS)”.
The three year Project, which is aimed at strengthening the innovative capacity of rural communities particularly rural women farmers to help increase food production and nutrition security is being jointly implemented by the Association of Church Based Development Projects (ACDEP) and the Navrongo –Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Office (NABOCADO) with funding support from the German Government through MISEREOR, a Catholic Organization also in Germany.
Launching the project at Bongo-Soe, the Regional Director of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Reverend John Manu, said the Multi-Stakeholders approach adopted by the project would help sustain it after external funding stops.
He said formal research; development technologies and interventions had often ignored the creativity and innovations of farmers as well as the values of communities’ local assets and called on Scientists to integrate the innovations and creativity of local farmers into their research to help boost agriculture.
The National Project Coordinator of Proli-FaNS , Mr Joseph Nchoh , explained that the Prolinnova-Ghana, an NGO affiliated to Prolinnova network , a Global NGO, which is promoting local innovations in ecological- oriented agriculture and natural resource management was the lead implementing agency in Ghana.
He mentioned that apart from the Bongo District in the Upper East Region and the Yendi District in the Northern Region of Ghana where the project is being implemented, the project was also being implemented in four other West African countries-Burkina Faso, Cameroun , Ethiopia and Kenyan.
Mr Nchor explained that as part of the project implementation strategies, Multi-Stakeholders platform made up of diverse persons with expertise including the innovators, agriculturalists, producers, processors and marketers had been formed
They will build the capacity of the beneficiaries and also share and learn experiences as well as replicate the good lessons leant at the institutional level to increase food production and improve upon nutrition.
Dr Joseph Ayembilla , the Human Development Coordinator of NABOCADO, said in spite of the fact the Rural Women farmers contributed significantly to agriculture production in the country , they were marginalized when it comes to agricultural support and expressed the optimism that the new project would help address some of the gaps.
He said over the years his outfit had implemented a number of projects in the Bongo District using local innovations of farmers which, he noted, had led to most communities to cope with the climate change stress situations thereby leading to the improvement of food and nutrition security.
“This is as a result of experiences and useful lessons leant during the implementation of projects such as the Participatory Innovations Development, the Local Innovation Contest and the ongoing Sustainable Agriculture Practices Programme(SAP) in the area which reached out to 11,485 beneficiaries made up of 8,943 males and 2,542 females in eight communities in the Diocese ,including the Bongo District is part”, Dr Ayembilla disclosed .
The Paramount Chief of the Bongo traditional area, Naba Baba Salifu Lameyaarum, lauded the efforts of both the funding agency and the implementers of the projects and impressed upon the beneficiary communities to take advantage of the project.