John told us:
"We are hosting the consultant from the DFID Propcom project.
Remember Propcom, is the new agric project aimed at promoting pro-poor access to markets. We have now engaged 10 Outreach Officers, and will later engage additional 10. These officers are farmers in their own rights and they will work closely with their communities to explain the Propcom project on how we want to minimise the effect of the middleman, so that the farmers get as much of their profit as possible. Staff member Comfort, is visiting the Outreach Officers along with the the Propcom consultant, meeting the chiefs to explain the project and get their buy-in.
Fantsuam is the link between the farmers and the major companies who are prepared to buy the grains. So we train the outreach officers on how to help the farmers to clean up and store their grains so that it will attract good prices. Fantsuam gets a commission for facilitating the process, the farmers get good prices, and the bulk purchase company is pleased to get good grain quality.
This project is particularly important for FF because it will improve our self-sustainability significantly.
One of the highlights is that from its inception, Propcom has enabled FF to give a 6 month employment to 10 farmers and will also pay the cost for 2 FF staff for 6 months. The project is also deepening FF’s relationship with its host communities, it is a further demonstration of our determination to work with the farmers so that they lift themselves out of poverty".
I then asked John to give us an update about Attachab and also about his Grazing Reserve program. This was because a few week’s ago I intrigued to learn John had to leave promptly at the end of our online meeting as Markus the Attachab manager was rushing him ‘to put a tank on the reserve’! John was able to answer my curiosity and to fill in the gaps in my knowledge and share with us some wonderful photos!
John told us:
“Attachab is right in the middle the Propcom program because it will be a model farm of what we are teaching other farmers to do.
The water tank has been purchased and hoisted at the Grazing Reserve, and we are now waiting to plough the land, once the rains stop, so that we can start planting our improved grass seeds. We have been asked to invite the Government officials down to see the Grazing Reserve beach it is the first of its kind in Kaduna State. It is a civil society initiative, it has a solar powered borehole, it now has water thoughts for cattle, and it has significant economic potentials for the host communities
We have now written official request to visit the key Government departments so that we can explain what the Grazing Reserve is doing and why we believe the Government should get involved to see if it can be replicated in other communities as way of minimising Farmers/ Pastoralists clashes for water and fodder for cattle.
We have written to the Ministry of Agriculture, Water Resources, Rural Development and Lands. We believe their involvement will ensure sustainability of the project beyond the DFID funding which comes to an end in November, 2015.
We heard that our request to Government about Computer Based Testing centre (CBT) is receiving attention, we are following up on it We think we have recently engaged in some really important projects whose impacts will be far-reaching in our host communities: CBT, Grazing Reserve, Propcom. All of these have immense economic potentials as wellAnd I think for the first time, we are also making more efforts to engage with the Nigerian Government: I remember it was your (Nikki/Dadamac) prompting that led me to consider talking with our Government about the CBT".
Click on link to hear more about the CBT centre and to follow the campaign.
The photo above shows Fulani women during the training on Women As Peace Agents consulted by Comfort, Theresa and Asabe.Photo of the tank being hoisted from John's truck is to be added here shortly!
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Changemaker: John Dada Information Agent: Nikki Fishman