Empowering Farmers through Knowledge

Japan’s N$2 Million Injection: Empowering Kavango West Farmers for Agricultural Excellence

In a remarkable stride towards strengthening Namibia’s agricultural landscape, a Japan-funded initiative has set aside a substantial N$2 million to empower farming communities in the Kavango West region. This generous allocation seeks to uplift local farmers, fostering growth, and innovation in the heart of Namibia.

A Closer Look: Japanese Embassy’s Mission

The journey towards this impactful allocation began with a visit by the Japanese Embassy to four pivotal projects within the Kavango West region. The mission’s primary objective was to gain insights into the remarkable work undertaken by local farmers on the ground. This hands-on approach enabled the embassy to identify specific needs and craft results-driven capacity-building initiatives, encompassing training and skill transfer opportunities for agriculture extension staff.

Fueling Progress: The N$2 Million Allocation

Zepee Havarua, Chief Agriculture Officer in the Kavango West region, elucidated how this financial support will be harnessed to benefit local farmers comprehensively. The N$2 million allocation will be channeled into two essential aspects: inputs or tools and training. The overarching goal extends beyond bolstering horticulture; it encompasses guiding poultry and goat farmers towards transitioning into meat production. Even small-scale farmers who have already received assistance will continue to benefit from ongoing training and support.

Havarua acknowledged the diligent efforts of the local farmers, emphasizing that some of them have utilized previously provided tools with remarkable accuracy, yielding impressive results.

A Vision for the Youth: Japan’s Commitment to Education and Agriculture

Hisao Nishim, Japanese Ambassador to Namibia, reaffirmed his nation’s steadfast commitment to supporting Namibia, particularly in the realms of education and agriculture. The Ambassador recognized the paramount importance of training the youth in agriculture, as it not only ensures their financial stability but also bolsters the nation’s agricultural future. He reiterated Japan’s consistent support for agricultural projects in Namibia over the past 13 years, citing tangible outcomes such as increased incomes and job creation.

These projects are designed to significantly benefit Namibia’s youth, providing them with opportunities for education and economic empowerment. The Ambassador underscored the wide-reaching impact of these initiatives, highlighting their expansion beyond the Kavango regions to Ondangwa campuses.

Farmers Thriving: A Testimony of Success

Marthi Ihemba, the owner of Klein Musese Investment CC, shared his story as a recipient of gardening tools from the Japan-funded project sites. He emphasized the importance of involving young people in agricultural production, encouraging them to become service providers and entrepreneurs. Ihemba, who has successfully generated income from his garden, has even employed other youth to work with him, exemplifying the transformative power of such initiatives.

Challenges Addressed: Journey Towards Sustainability

Johannes Mukoso, another farmer from Kapako, highlighted the numerous challenges faced by farmers in the region. These include limited visibility in the food industry, transportation difficulties due to inadequate roads, vehicles, and financial resources, and the arduous task of carrying produce on foot to local markets. Mukoso emphasized the critical need for a dedicated market where farmers can sell their products.

Japan’s Ongoing Support: A Proven Commitment

Japan’s contribution to Namibia extends beyond agriculture. Earlier this month, Japan donated N$29 million worth of cold chain equipment to bolster Namibia’s healthcare systems. This generous gift, comprising 350 vaccine carriers and 295 fridge tags, is a testament to Japan’s unwavering commitment to supporting Namibia’s progress.

This marks the second visit by the Japanese Embassy to the region, underscoring the enduring partnership and shared vision for a prosperous Namibia. As the seeds of opportunity are sown and nurtured, the Kavango West region is poised for remarkable agricultural growth and sustainable development. Stay tuned as this transformative journey unfolds, benefiting communities and fostering a brighter future for Namibia’s agriculture.

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