RAFFS Project launches its Inception Workshop and Assessments in Uganda Kampala, Uganda, 10/10/2023.
The African Union-InterAfrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) is set to launch inception workshops and assessments for the Resilient African Feed and Fodder Systems Project (RAFFS) in 6 African Union Member States. Uganda will be the first country to launch these activities. This project aims to address critical challenges impacting African feed and fodder systems. The RAFFS Project seeks to respond to challenges posed by the Triple C crises: Covid-19, Climate Change shocks, and the Conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
These crises have resulted in substantial livestock losses, particularly in the greater Horn of Africa, affecting livelihoods, incomes, and the affordability of essential livestock-sourced foods. Feed costs, constitutes approximately 60-70% of animal production expenses. This leaves African feed and fodder supply chains vulnerable. To address these challenges, it’s important to safeguard livelihoods, ensure business continuity, and strengthen the resilience of feed and fodder systems in the face of escalating and multifaceted shocks. RAFFS project seeks to offer short-term solutions while building resilience in these systems.
The overall goal of the project is to enhance food and nutrition security by addressing the adverse effects of recent crises on African feed and fodder systems. Inception Workshop and National Launch: The Inception Workshop in Uganda will be the first to be held in the RAFFS Project six core AU member states: Cameroon, Kenya, Nigeria, Somalia, and Zimbabwe. These events will involve key stakeholders presenting preliminary findings from surveys, launching the project officially, and introducing the African Women in Animal Resources Farming and Agribusiness Network (AWARFA-N) to enhance women's participation in the feed and fodder sector.
The country-level assessments are expected to yield insights into the impact of crises on feed and fodder systems, digital capacities, women's inclusion, and policy frameworks. National Assessment teams will be trained on field assessment tasks, data compilation, training on financial inclusion and business formalization will be part of the meetings. Effective participation of AWARFA-N in the RAFFS Project is a key highlight of the week-long event. These meetings will be held with high level stakeholders from the private and Ministers in charge of Livestock will lead the government discussions. Expected workshop outputs include: improved access to financial and insurance products for women, identified capacity needs and roadmaps for mobilizing women in value chains.
These efforts aim to empower women to actively engage in the feed and fodder supply chains and animal-sourced food production. AWARFA-N: AWARFA-N was launched in July 2018, supported by the AU-IBAR and funded by the European Union. AWARFA-N consists of continental, regional, and national chapters, focusing on empowering women involved in animal resource value chains. Critical issues faced by women in the livestock sector revolve around their constrained access to appropriate, long-term financing solutions tailored to their unique requirements. Women play pivotal roles in our society, serving as the bedrock for resilience through their functions in reproduction, nurturing, caregiving, and productivity.
These multifaceted roles significantly contribute to individual, household, and community income, foster economic expansion, ensure food security, and enhance the well-being of children. AWARFA- N seeks to enhance women's participation and benefits across animal resource value chains, including feed and fodder, women aspire to expand beyond subsistence livestock keeping into commercial ventures at various scales. About AU-IBAR: AU-IBAR operates as a technical office within the African Union Commission, with a core mission to support African Union member states in harnessing the potential of animals for human well-being and economic development. The organization plays a pivotal role in coordinating and advancing livestock development across the continent.
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