HARARE – The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) on May 30, launched the five-year USAID-funded Farmer-to-Farmer Program for the years 2018-2023 at Africa Synod House in Harare.
There were representatives from the, the Government of Zimbabwe, a Farmer-to-Farmer volunteer, and implementing organization Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture (CNFA).
The representatives reaffirmed their shared commitment to strengthening agriculture and resilience in Zimbabwe.
The USAID-funded John Ogonowski and Doug Bereuter Farmer-to-Farmer Program provides technical assistance by highly qualified American volunteers to farmers, farmer groups, agribusinesses, and other agriculture sector institutions in developing and transitional countries.
The program aims to generate sustainable, broad-based economic growth in the agricultural sector and increase understanding of international development issues and U.S. development programs through people-to-people diplomacy.
In Zimbabwe, the program will focus on horticulture, legumes and livestock/dairy value chains due to their potential to benefit many farmers and earn high returns on investment.
Through 84 volunteer assignments, the program will catalyze the development of commercially viable and sustainable businesses along these value chains.
The volunteers will support the efforts of current US government-funded agricultural programs working with farmers, aggregators, processors, and marketers.
The training and support provided through Farmer-to-Farmer will focus on improved production and processing technologies, strengthening organizational and marketing capacity of agribusinesses, and promoting the use of conservation agriculture.
Over the course of the five-year program, volunteers will train thousands of small-holder farmers to increase sales and learn how to do farming as a business in order to increase household incomes, strengthen livelihoods, and build community resilience.
USAID, have contributed over $3 billion in assistance to Zimbabwe for a period of over 30 years.
Current projects include initiatives to increase food security, support economic resilience, improve health systems and services, and promote a more democratic system of governance.