By Kolawole Olayinka, Abeokuta
In a bid to boost the agricultural sector and promote gender equality, the South-West Association of Vegetable Farmers and Sellers (SWAVFS) in collaboration with HortiNigeria organized event to commemorate the International Day of Women and Girls in Agriculture and Science.
The event held in Imasayi, Ogun State, aimed to empower over 1000 women vegetable farmers and highlight the crucial role they play in the agricultural industry.
Eco-efficient production innovations, making farming an attractive and profitable venture for women farmers were showcased.
Through workshops, demonstrations, and interactive sessions, participants gained valuable insights into sustainable farming practices and the latest advancements in agricultural science.
This initiative aimed to equip women farmers with the knowledge and resources needed to succeed in their endeavors.
Speaking with journalists, Mrs. Boluwatife Maybee, Secretary of SWAVFS, emphasized the significance of the event in fostering dialogue, empowerment, and inspiration among participants, stressed the need to invest more in the agricultural sector, as it has the potential to drive economic growth and development in Nigeria.
According to her, the celebration of the International Day of Women and Girls in Agriculture and Science served as a platform to recognize and appreciate the immense contributions of women farmers to food security and economic stability.
“The initiative aimed to equip women farmers with the knowledge and resources needed to succeed in their endeavors.
“I am from Yewa, I use to come here to spend my holidays , since I was five, I use to come and spend holidays with grandparents .when I came back from law school ,years after , Yewa is still the same way I left it, in fact if anything ,it was worst,increase in production and decrease in productivity when it comes to human capacity.
” I felt we need to change the narrative, so I came here , spent three years living here, observing, taking note of their problems, and I realize that they have lands in abundant in Yewa but we are not getting as much as we want, that was the reason I gave up my law career to focus on agriculture.
“In yewa, agriculture is seen as man’s job, women are just backups lines, but I was able to show them that women are actually part of this, they really matter, I was able to encourage them, give them incentive and then I used myself as examples to show them it’s actually possible”, she added.
She therefore appealed to government at all levels to invest more in Agricultural sector, saying that once the sector is fixed, other sectors in Nigeria will works out.
One of the beneficiaries, Joyce Happiness expressed her happiness as a beneficiary of agriculture saying that as a female she feeds family via agriculture.
Her words “I was able to cater for my personal need and my family via agriculture because then it was known to be poor man’s work and female do not really participate in it but when the interest of female began to rise in agriculture, we start to see them exploring and excelling.
“So, I am highly honored and proud to be a female farmer and a beneficiary of agriculture and I am also putting it my best that this doesn’t stop here, this is going to be continuous process to the agricultural system of the world today”.