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Focus on... Women in agriculture

Half of the food grown in the world is produced by women farmers and an estimated 1.6 billion women depend on agriculture for their livelihoods. However, the productivity of many women farmers is severely constrained by institutional and cultural barriers, including poor access to land, credit, and education. Worldwide, women receive only about five per cent of agriculture extension services and own not more than two per cent of land.

However, where women have access to education, infrastructure, credit and health care, incomes are seen to improve along with the wellbeing of their families, as they invest in education and healthcare. This ultimately results in a ripple of benefits that can extend to the entire community as women work together to improve their lives.

In this edition of New Agriculturist, we focus on the role of women in agriculture and the innovative means by which women around the world, including those in agricultural research, are being provided with the support and recognition that they need and deserve.

Addressing hunger - why women can't wait

Addressing hunger - why women can't wait

Women play a vital, but often ignored role in addressing hunger. In response, Concern Worldwide has launched its 'Women Can't Wait' campaign, highlighting examples of how marginalised women around the globe have successfully organised themselves and fed their families.

Date published: September 2010

An AWARDing approach to science in Africa

An AWARDing approach to science in Africa

Women provide the backbone of agriculture in Africa. In recent years, the critical role of women scientists in helping smallholder farmers has been recognised by the African Women in Agricultural Research and Development programme, which provides fellowships to strengthen research and leadership skills.

Date published: September 2010

Custodians of the forest - women in Guatemala

Custodians of the forest - women in Guatemala

To help safeguard Guatemala's forests, the Rainforest Alliance is working with local communities to enhance employment opportunities and ensure responsible forest management. The participation of women has been vital to the success of this work and has also increased their influence within their communities and provided them with new sources of employment.

Date published: September 2010

Training gender champions in Nepal

Training gender champions in Nepal

Over 15 years of linking rural women and professional women in partnership, WOCAN has developed a comprehensive training approach for the development of new gender champions to mainstream gender analysis and planning within and beyond their respective organisations.

Date published: September 2010

Garden-in-a-sack for urban poor

Garden-in-a-sack for urban poor

Thousands of landless poor in Nairobi's slum areas are supplementing their food and income by growing vegetables in sacks. Many are making compost from kitchen waste and bio-pesticides from locally growing plants, to boost their yields.

Date published: September 2010

Successful interventions - supporting women in Liberia

Successful interventions - supporting women in Liberia

During Liberia's civil war agricultural production dropped significantly. To revive rice fields and help farmers increase their food production, FAO are working to strengthen women's producer organisations and support their participation in decision-making processes.

Date published: September 2010

 

 

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