Farmers from around the globe will be gathering in Rome later this month to review their collaboration with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and share their experiences and knowledge.
The Farmers Forum runs between the 15 and 16 February 2016 with leaders from Farmers Organisations around the world will be in attendance. SACAU will be one of these FOs.
The Farmers Forum was started in 2005 as a way to strengthen ties between FOs and The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). IFAD is a specialised agency within the United Nations. The 2016 Farmers’ Forum will enable IFAD to take into account the needs of the farmers into IFAD’s new Strategic Framework and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
SACAU will be sending six delegates – SACAU president, SACAU CEO, Presidents of Seychelles Farmers’ Association, and Lesotho National Farmers’ Union, the vice president of Swaziland National Agricultural Union and the SACAU Capacity Development Advisor, Benito Eliasi.
Eliasi noted that one of the issues that SACAU was most interested in discussing was that of the Southern African drought. “It is expected that leaders of farmers’ organizations will discuss the issue and share strategies on how best to address the current situation and how to prepare and avert similar situations in future,” he said.
He also noted that prior to the forum, Farmers’ Organizations are going to share effective models and mechanisms of delivering economic services to farmers. “SACAU delegates will be keen to share its experiences and also learn one or two things from other regional farmers’ organizations,” he said.
SACAU’s delegation will share their experiences and status of agriculture in their respective countries. Eliasi notes that prior to the forum, SACAU will also share with other participants the strides it has made in strengthening farmers’ organizations in the region through an IFAD funded program.
The forum will be preceded by a special session on Pastoralism on 12 February and followed by a number of side events on 18 February.
“It is an opportune time for IFAD and representatives of farmers’ organization to discuss how support could be provided direct to farmers through organized agriculture,” said Eliasi. “This might result into direct impact of IFAD’s support. The expectation is that direct technical and financial collaboration between farmers’ organizations and IFAD will be strengthened.”