NWU Mafikeng Campus hosts a seminar for women in agriculture

Koos Degenaar -- Wed, 09/09/2015 - 16:54

NWU Mafikeng Campus hosts a seminar for women in agriculture

As part of their community outreach programme, the Animal Health Department at the North-West University's (NWU's) Mafikeng Campus, in partnership with Batswana Farmers,  recently hosted a seminar for women in agriculture. 

The seminar, held on 29 August, was attended by seasoned and prospective female farmers in celebration of Women's month. The prospective female farmers included NWU students and matriculates from high schools around Mahikeng.

The seminar addressed a whole range of issues which include aspects such as women as innovators of land and animal husbandry, lack of self-esteem of women in farming activities, increasing women’s self-confidence to partake in agribusiness, and aligning one’s agribusiness with unions and associations. According to Dr Mathew Nyirenda, one of the organisers, women play a predominant role in African agriculture. They stand out as pillars of economic growth, especially when it comes to agriculture and agribusiness, which dominate rural economies throughout Africa. 

The seminar challenged its participants with the following questions: What is it we like to achieve as women in agriculture? How do we organise ourselves in order to create networks that allow for productive interaction and how do we grow as women and become successful agri-businesses?

They further challenged governments and financial institutions in the region to prioritize support for female farmers through policies, funding and programming — an investment they said will accelerate agricultural growth while addressing food security.