240 male and female rice farmers and processors have become full-fledged businessmen and women after graduating from WOFAN/CARI Farmer Business School (FBS) in Kano. The FBS is a four-day Business School which provides a platform for rice farmers
and processors to learn how to turn their farming or processing activities into full-fledged businesses using modern tools to plan, track and review their businesses.
The first Business School, which was held in Dawakin Kudu Local Government Area (LGA), had two classes of 30 participants each. Six other schools of 30 participants each were then held in Garun Malam and Bunkure LGAs, bringing the total number of beneficiaries to 240 as at the end of December, 2015.
In each of the schools, participants received training on Management of Farms as an Enterprise, Basics of Healthy Nutrition and Farm Management for Food Security, Planning of Production and Financial Management, Profit-Loss Assessment of Current and Improved Techniques, Decisions to Increase and Diversify Income, How to Obtain Good Financial Services and Benefits from Membership in Farmer Organizations.
At the end of the training, graduands received certificates of participation. They also expressed delight with the new skills and ideas acquired from the FBS.
According to Malam Abdulazeez, one of the participants from Dawakin Kudu LGA, the FBS has turned all of them into businessmen and women.
He said, “FBS has opened our eyes to the fact that most of us have been running at losses because we were treating farming as a hobby and not as a business. We have now learnt how to carry on farming as a real business and how to track our money-out and money-in to see if we are making profit or not.”
On her part, Hajiya Zainab, a participant from Garun Malam LGA noted that the FBS has taught her the importance of record keeping in any business. “Even if one cannot read or write, it is still important to keep records so that one can plan, execute and review business activities. So, I have learnt that I can ask one of my children to help keep the records so that I can always see whether I am making money or losing it. And, with the tools which FBS gave us, this will not be difficult”, she enthused.
Also speaking on the training, Alhaji Salihu Musa, the Traditional Ruler of Kumurya in Bunkure LGA, who was also a participant, expressed appreciation to WOFAN and CARI for bringing the FBS to his community. He called on all beneficiaries to make the best use of the new ideas and skills acquired from the school.
FBS is being facilitated in Kano State by WOFAN and CARI. It is a concept developed through a collaboration involving German International Cooperation (GIZ), Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) through Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL).
The FBS will be taken round the four LGAs which are benefiting from the CARI Project and over 5,000 farmers and processors are expected to attend the FBS before the end of the project.
WOMEN FARMERS ADVANCEMENT NETWORK.