Establishing a training network to improve vegetable farming for women in Cameroon

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The International Centre for Environmental Education and Community Development in Cameroon (ICENECDEV) empowers people to protect the environment and improve sustainable livelihood. In particular, ICENECDEV is building a global grassroots movement to raise environmental awareness, promote education and support community development by sharing practical ways in which people are addressing environmental issues and improving sustainable livelihoods. In this regard, ICENECDEV has established a training program to improve vegetable farming for women. The project aims to enhance the livelihoods of rural women farmers in 8 villages by improving literacy and agricultural farming.

No Poverty , Zero Hunger , Gender Equality , Climate Action , Eradicate extreme poverty , End hunger, especially of poor, vulnerable, infants , End malnutrition, especially in children, women, elders , Ensure women’s participation, equal leadership opportunities , Ensure women’s equal rights to resources, inheritance , Strengthen resilience, adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards , Improve learning, capacity on climate change measures , Improve learning, capacity on climate change measures

While the percentage of people living in poverty has decreased in urban areas of Cameroon, it has increased in rural areas where nearly half of all Cameroonians live. Nearly 6 million rural people, about 55% of the rural population in Cameroon, still live in poverty. Over half of all men and women employed in Cameroon work in the agricultural sector, which makes up 20% of Cameroon’s GDP. In regards to formal education, only 21% of females in Cameroon have secondary school education in contrast to 35% of males, while 64% of women are participating in the formal labor force compared to 77.4% of men. The overall aim of the project is to enhance the livelihood of rural women in the villages of Bolifamba and Muea by improving literacy and agricultural farming skills through the establishment of a sustainable network of women farmers.

In order to support the livelihood of women farmers, ICENECDEV has established a training program to improve vegetable farming. The training program covers farming topics, such as land preparation, including the identification of farming inputs and techniques on how to measure farmland. This training also includes techniques for applying nursing seeds, such as carrots and huckleberry and transplanting them.

The training program also focuses on the exchange of market information and has improved learning opportunities for its participants. Due to its success, the project has been replicated in the northwest region of Cameroon, specifically in the village communities of Guzang, Bessi and Batibo.

Results Achieved

The creation of the vegetable training program provided the opportunity for rural women to improve their livelihood. The training program has also improved literacy and farming inputs through its members and other women’s groups.

In particular, the training program achieved the following results:

• 110 rural women across the local communities increased their knowledge around land preparation and farming inputs by sharing their knowledge with each other.

• 110 rural women have a sustained increase of 100% in their average household income to 80,000FRS per month due to improved business and income generation skills.

• The trained rural women have further trained more than 1,000 rural women from other villages.

• These rural women use their improved literacy skills to keep records of their sales of vegetable production, as well as fertilizer inputs.

Cameroon

MIVA Switzerland , Feed the Minds UK , 1% Fund for Development Switzerland

ICENECDEV-International Centre for Environmental Education and Community Development

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