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Kwara State, HerVest collaborate on gender finance for women farmers

Women farmers

The Kwara State Government has launched a collaborative initiative with HerVest, an inclusive fintech in Nigeria, to finance and train 1,000 rural female farmers across the state.

The initiative, launched through the Office of the Agriculture Technical Adviser to the Executive Governor, commenced on April 2, in the LGA’s communities of Ajase-Ipo (Kwara South), Lade Patigi (Kwara North), and Ilorin (Kwara Central).

The gender-based programme is designed to equip women farmers in basic agronomic practices and financial literacy, to enable them to make informed farming, and agribusiness decisions while providing them with access to credit, key inputs, and markets to grow their farm enterprises.

The project is in alignment with the 10-Year Agricultural Transformation Plan of the Kwara State Government led by His Excellency, Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, which is designed to ensure food security, generate employment opportunities, and reduce poverty rate.

At the commencement of the training exercise, the HerVest team led by the Technical Advisor on Agriculture to the Kwara State Government, Abdulquawiy Olododo, visited the Deputy Governor of Kwara State, Kayode Alabi, to flag-off the initiative.

The gender-based programme is designed to equip women farmers in basic agronomic practices and financial literacy, to enable them to make informed farming, and agribusiness decisions while providing them with access to credit, key inputs, and markets to grow their farm enterprises.

Bridging finance gap

During the visit, the CEO and Co-founder, HerVest, Solape Akinpelu, spotlighted the existing $42 billion gender finance gap and HerVest’s mission to bridge this chasm by linking urban women with opportunities to impact invest in female farmers by providing them with access to credit, extension services and premium markets through a gender-focused lens.

She said: “Female farmers contribute over 70% to food production in Nigeria, yet receive less than 10% of structured funding. They are highly disadvantaged despite their roles in the agricultural sector and require special support in realising their potential.

“As a social enterprise geared towards impact and addressing the $15.6billion gender finance gap in agriculture, HerVest believes that partnerships and industrialization are key to addressing the challenges in agriculture.

“This is why we are truly delighted and honoured to partner with the Office of the Technical Adviser on Agriculture to the Executive Governor of Kwara State to project finance and train 1,000 women farmers in the state.”

She further expressed her excitement in collaborating with the state government on this feat while emphasizing female empowerment as an organic catalyst for economic growth.

According to her, women are natural accelerators who reinvest a large percentage of their income into their households and therefore should be empowered with capacity.

Female farmers contribute over 70% to food production in Nigeria, yet receive less than 10% of structured funding. They are highly disadvantaged despite their roles in the agricultural sector and require special support in realising their potential.

In his remarks, the Deputy Governor applauded the ground-breaking project and expressed the state’s readiness to support it while also validating the need for gender inclusion in global entrepreneurship through agriculture.

He further maintained that the partnership with the State Government is the right step toward the actualization of the state’s agricultural sustainable developmental goals.

HerVest is an inclusive digital platform that provides financial growth services to underserved and excluded African women through target savings, impact investing and credit financing- specifically for women farmers in Nigeria.

So far, HerVest has impacted over 5,000 thousand female farmers across Borno, Plateau, Kaduna, Benue, Niger, Oyo, and Ogun states in addition to its current project in Kwara.

HerVest has over 20,000 women community members achieving financial wellness through competitive returns on target savings, agro investments and gender-driven financial literacy resources. HerVest is downloadable on internet-enabled devices.

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