As you all know gender and vcd is a challenge, even more so in Ethiopia, which performs worse on gender indicators than many other sub-saharan African countries. So in this respect some good news:
- the cluster business plan competition held by the APF learning alliance awarded a pro-gender price to one of the 18 farmer marketing organizations, it concerned a business plan to further develop the incense and arabic gum value chain, which benefits a lot of women in the poor North of the country.
- An other encouraging development is that many farmer marketing organizations start taking on more female members as one of their priorities (female membership has grown from average 16% tot 20% in one year, meaning about 400 more female members). Quite some have increased female membership of their boards as well over the past year.
- A value chain and gender study is currently executed by a local consultant to assess how VCD can be made more pro-gender. The report is expected in May and will be shared with you.
Regards Andre Vording ICCO