THE Apex Body Women in Poultry Value Chain (WIPVaC-Apex Ghana) has equipped 40 regional leaders of women in the poultry value chain with leadership skills to help sustain the poultry sector.
The participants, who were drawn from the Western North, Western, Central, Greater Accra, Eastern, Volta and Oti regions, were taken through topics such as crises management, communication strategies, group dynamics and policy advocacy.
The five-day training was organised in collaboration with the American Soybean Association (ASA), World Initiative Soy Bean in Human Health (WISHH), Women in Poultry Value Chain and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture.
In a speech read on his behalf, the Minister of Agriculture, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto, said poultry contributed to food security by providing meat and eggs which were rich in protein and provided additional revenue to farmers beyond their traditional crops and livestock.
He said the recent developmental policies for the poultry industry in Ghana had sought to improve the entire poultry value chain to minimise production costs and increase farmers’ income and share in the value chain.
He said in Ghana, agriculture was the most important source of income for women and men in the rural areas; however, women mostly held part time, low-wage, seasonal employment and were sometimes paid less, even when they were qualified.
In addition, he said women were more disadvantaged than men in value chain operations with no respect to ownership of assets, negotiations and decision-making.
“About 57 per cent of rural women in Ghana are engaged in agriculture and agriculture value chain; however, they either earn very low incomes or are not paid at all because they are used as family labourers.
“Globally, gender segregation and inequality in productive sectors, including agriculture, is a major concern and requires gender mainstreaming in policy framework,” he stated.
He said numerous studies have examined gender roles in agricultural value chains, but only a few had examined the distribution of benefits by the actors in the value chains.
“Therefore, this workshop, which seeks to identify and train the executives of WIPVaC to acquire leadership skills to enable them to effectively and efficiently play their roles as leaders in Ghana’s poultry value chain, is very timely,” he said.
The President of WIPVaC, Victoria Norgbey, said the training which had begun in the southern sector would be extended to the northern sector as well.
She said the training aimed to equip participants with better ways of managing the poultry industry to minimise the challenges they were currently facing.
“We are hoping that at the end of the training, the leaders will acquire the needed leadership skills to help increase the number of women in the association to work along the poultry value chain,” she stated.