Women in cocoa growing communities in the Asikuma Odoben Brakwa district of the Central region have found ways to empower themselves by engaging in micro-enterprises to make them financially sufficient.
The women’s group, Women in Cocoa Communities Development Association (WINCODA), has trained members in detergent and soap making and pastry making to make them financially independent and to be able to support their families.
The group formed as part of Care International’s Cocoa Sustainability Initiative (CSI) project has also begun a nursery of cocoa seedlings for sale to cocoa farmers and proceeds kept in a welfare fund to support members in need.
WINCODA is aimed among others at enhancing women’s collective agency and offer them a voice in the communities, district, regional and national level in decision making processes.
The association also aims at creating economic opportunities for women and to increase access to credit, farmer access to inputs and facilitate the delivery of climate smart extension services to members.
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The President of WINCODA in the district, Madam Juliana Aidoo said women were very important stakeholders in the home and communities and being financially sufficient had many positive effects on the family.
“We are now able to contribute substantially towards the upkeep of the home. We support our husbands and life is better,” she said.
Speaking to the media after a durbar to mark this year’s International Women’s Day at Domeabra in the Asikuma-Odoben Brakwa district, Madam Aidoo said it was unfortunate that most often women did not have access to the resources they required to support their enterprises.
Madam Aidoo further noted that with the needed resources women farmers could support the make the country food sufficient while also improving the wellbeing of families.
This year, Care International, Ghana marked the IWD at Domeabra in the Asikuma-Odoben Brakwa district with its WINCODA members and others from other parts of the country.
There was an exhibition of products learnt from training giving to members with support from Care International.
The Country Director of Care International Madam Rose Tchwenko said Care International would continue to support women in their journey for a better life.
The Regional Officer of the Women in Agriculture Development of the Ministry of food and Agriculture, Ms Esther Akumanyi said it was important to build the confidence of women by appointing them into decision making position.
The District Chief Executive for the district, Mr Isaac Odoom said 80 percent of MASLOC loans went to women in the district to help to be economically independent.
He advised women to get involved in the district assembly elections to be part of the district’s decision making body.