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African Union Project on Malawian Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture: Cooperation with Norway and Germany

Africa Renewal December 2019 - March 2020 Issue

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African Union Project on Malawian Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture: Cooperation with Norway and Germany

28 January 2020
Woman smiling and foraging
Woman smiling and foraging

The Royal Norwegian Embassy in Malawi signed a delegated cooperation agreement with the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development to co-finance the project ‘Promoting Agricultural Technical Vocational Education and Training for Women (ATVET4W).

The project is implemented by the African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD) with support from Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).

In addition to Malawi, the pan-African project reaches out to five other AU Member States: Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Kenya and Togo. The political partner of the project is the African Union Commission, the main implementing organisation is AUDA-NEPAD. 

The Norwegian Minister of International Development, Mr. Dag-Inge Ulstein, and the Minister of Agriculture and Food, Ms. Olaug Vervik Bollestad will visit Malawi from the 20th to the 24th of January 2020. Together with representatives from the German Embassy, Malawi and AUDA-NEPAD, they will launch the joint cooperation on  24 January.

Since 2017, the ATVET4W project has championed gender-transformative approaches to empower women in agriculture through increased skills, knowledge, income, decision-making power and agency. Rather than simply measuring how many women have been trained, ATVET4W questions established norms and gender stereotypes to dismantle existing structural inequalities for women in Malawi’s agricultural sector.

To showcase this, the cooperation launch in January 2020 will focus on hearing from the project’s beneficiaries and stakeholders. A marketplace will be organised at the premises of Malawi’s ‘Technical, Entrepreneurial and Vocational Education and Training Authority ’ with different stalls for interaction. 

One stall will be hosted by Ngaba and Dziko Chatata, the founders of Thantwe Farms. With support from ATVET4W, the Chatatas offer mentorship and skills training to budding farmers and vulnerable households surrounding their farm in Likuni. This outgrower scheme uses a household approach to champion joint decision-making for farm and home-related management decisions. 

The delegated cooperation agreement between Norway and Germany includes a contribution to curricula development and competency-based training delivery along selected agricultural value chains. It also involves a strengthening of the ATVET system in Malawi with the ultimate objective to bring women into employment. The target group consists specifically of women. The delegated cooperation started in December 2019 and ends in August 2022. The volume of the co-financing agreement is ten million Norwegian Kroner (approximately €1 million) per year.

Objectives, milestones, and outputs of the delegated cooperation agreement