Come to our aid to enhance our cocoa farming – Women Cooperative Farmers and Marketing Union
In the heart of Ghana’s Brong Ahafo region, a group of resilient women is making strides in the world of cocoa farming. The Bechem Zone Women Co-operative Farmers Association, a part of the Brong Ahafo Women Cooperative Farmers and Marketing Union [BAWCOF], is a testament to the growing influence of women in the country’s cocoa industry. However, despite their dedication and commitment, these women face numerous challenges that hinder their progress.
The Vice Chairperson for the Association, Madam Margaret Henewaa, recently revealed the difficulties experienced by women in cocoa farming. Among the pressing issues are limited access to farm inputs, poor road networks, inadequate financial aid, and a shortage of seeds to support their cocoa business activities. Despite these challenges, women’s involvement in cocoa farming has seen significant improvements in the Ahafo and Brong regions compared to other areas. These women play a crucial role in supporting the Produce Buying Company [PBC] and contributing to the country’s cocoa production.
In an effort to bring attention to their plight and seek solutions, the Bechem Zone Women Co-operative Farmers Association held an inauguration event, attended by Madam Grace Boachie, the Chairperson of the association. Madam Boachie emphasized the need to empower and encourage women’s active involvement in cocoa farming to support their husbands, families, and secure their livelihoods. She highlighted the importance of relieving the pressure on women by enabling them to become more self-reliant and not solely dependent on their spouses.
To ensure the continued growth and success of these enterprising women, the appeal for support has been extended to various stakeholders. Non-governmental organizations (NGOs), government representatives, and even Ghana’s First Lady and Second Lady are urged to lend a helping hand. By addressing the challenges faced by women in cocoa farming, these institutions can play a pivotal role in enhancing the industry’s sustainability and social impact.
NGOs can facilitate training programs, providing education on modern agricultural practices, and promoting gender equality in the sector. Improving road networks in rural cocoa farming communities can enhance transportation of crops, reducing post-harvest losses and increasing accessibility to markets. Financial aid and access to affordable farm inputs can empower these women to make meaningful contributions to cocoa production, increasing their economic independence.
Furthermore, partnerships with research institutions and agricultural experts can help address specific challenges unique to women in cocoa farming. Tailored solutions, such as providing support in obtaining land titles or access to credit facilities, can significantly boost women’s participation and productivity.
In conclusion, the Bechem Zone Women Co-operative Farmers Association’s call for support shines a light on the remarkable efforts of women in cocoa farming. Their dedication and resilience have already made significant contributions to the cocoa industry in Ghana.
By addressing the challenges they face, we can unlock the full potential of women in cocoa farming, fostering sustainable development, and empowering these women to lead the way towards a brighter future.