By enhancing the performance of small farmers, agricultural businesses, microfinance banks (MfBs), as well as their networking across the sector’s value chains, the Nigerian agricultural sector is being strengthened by the AFOS Foundation, an autonomous and charitable foundation with roots in Germany that was established to support micro and small businesses and the growing middle class in developing and emerging countries.
The Foundation has invested over €5.5 million in the development of the sector through interventions in capacity building, value-driven organizational development, management development, corporate governance, and product development, according to the chief executive officer and country representative of the Foundation, Mr. Oladipupo Akoni, who was speaking about the Foundation’s interventions in Nigeria’s agricultural sector since it began its project activities in the sector in 2017.
“Since the beginning of its agricultural project activities in Nigeria in 2017, AFOS Foundation has reached over 45,000 smallholder farmers in Nigeria with the attendant positive impacts on their skills, productivity, and earned incomes,” Akoni said in a brief interview with journalists during the AFOS Foundation’s first Stakeholders’ Roundtable event, which took place on Friday in Lagos. “AFOS Foundation targets to reach 60,000 small farmers by the end of 2024,” she added.
Delegation of German Industry and Commerce in Nigeria (AHK), National Board for Technical Education (NBTE), Big-Dutchman, TUNS Farms, Dayntee Farms, Animal Care Services Konsult, and Microfinance Agricultural Learning & Development Center (MLDC) were among the partner organizations that attended the event.
Promoters of the Foundation put a lot of emphasis on the Technical & Vocational Education (TVET) path under the National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF) as a reliable and crucial mechanism to support entrepreneurship and the growth and proliferation of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria.
The Country Representative explained that in order to build on the accomplishments of the Foundation in Nigeria, AFOS’ projects are now concentrating on Improved Agricultural Practices for Smallholder Farmers (SHF), Institutionalized Dual Vocational Training Systems, Value-Based Management Training, and the Development of an Agricultural Training Center for the Agric sector, in addition to Micro-insurance Product Development, Agric Finance Training, and Sensitization for the Microfinance Subsector.
The Agricultural Training Centre (ATC), which is being facilitated by our implementation partner in Nigeria -MLDC, will have a tremendous impact on the Nigerian agricultural sector by addressing its skills and development challenges as well as capacity replacement, especially in this era of massive emigration, according to the CEO and Country Representative of the Foundation.
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