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Dominica part of gender-responsive agriculture program starting this year – Dominica News Online

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A new CA$10 million Regional Gender-Responsive Climate-Smart Agriculture and Food Systems in the Caribbean project will have a significant impact on the region. The initiative is set to benefit farmers and entrepreneurs from several countries, including Dominica, Belize, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Suriname.

The project, which will span from 2024 to 2028, is being spearheaded by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in collaboration with Canada, local government, and civil society partners. It aims to bolster the resilience of Caribbean farmers in the face of climate change and contribute to the region’s economic growth.

One of the key highlights of the project is its focus on improving the livelihoods of women and youth in climate-resilient agriculture value chains. This will be achieved through close collaboration with local Ministries of Agriculture, farmer organizations, gender bureaus, research institutions, and community-based agro-processing centers.

The initiative will also prioritize the use of climate-smart technologies, innovations, and practices by agricultural stakeholders to ensure more data-driven decision-making and advocate for the expansion of inclusive, gender-responsive, climate-resilient value chains.

Lilian Chatterjee, High Commissioner of Canada to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, emphasized the importance of empowering women and closing gender gaps in agri-food systems to achieve sustainable and resilient outcomes. She also highlighted Canada’s commitment to complementing the project with other efforts to strengthen agricultural entrepreneurship and food systems in the region.

Furthermore, Dr. Renata Clarke, FAO’s Sub-Regional Coordinator for the Caribbean, mentioned the promotion of climate-smart technologies tailored to the region and the implementation of efficient and affordable practices and technologies, including renewable energy for solar pumps for irrigation, and digital agricultural sensors.

The project’s objective is to directly impact up to 2,500 beneficiaries over a four-and-a-half-year period, with women comprising 50% and youth 20% of the beneficiaries. Additionally, more than 30 farmer organizations, including women and youth-led organizations, will be engaged throughout the project’s implementation period.  Although the initiative primarily targets eight Caribbean countries, it is anticipated to have broad regional benefits for all CARICOM Member States.

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