Sub Department of Microcredit, Gender & Environment
This sub department is made up of 2 services namely:
1. Service for Micro credit
2. Service for Gender and Environment
These 2 services are again sub divided into 3 bureaus:
1. Bureau for gender development
2. Bureau for environment and sustainability
3. Bureau for recovery
4. Bureau for credit
SOWEDA MICRFOCREDIT SCHEME FOR LIVESTOCK & FISHERIES
1.1. Objectives of the Livestock and Fisheries Revolving Micro-Credit Scheme
1.1.1. Global Objective
The overall objective of the SOWEDA Livestock and Fisheries microcredit scheme is to contribute significantly in strengthening food security for livestock and fisheries products and improve the livelihoods of the rural populations in South West Region.
1.1.2. General Objectives
The overall objective is to support actors in the value chain on livestock, fisheries and fish farming sectors to contribute significantly to economic growth in the South West Region and create decent jobs particularly for women and youth.
1.1.3. Specific Objectives
- Facilitate access to credit for Livestock and Fisheries producers and other actors in the value chain;
- Set up support infrastructures to permit Livestock and Fisheries farmers/producers to acquire in a sustainable manner all production inputs;
- Build the capacities of the value chain actors.
1.2. Expected results
- Increased household income for the actors in livestock, fisheries and fish farming sectors;
- Increased number of decent jobs created in the livestock, fisheries and fish farming sectors;
- The access to credit is facilitated for actors of Livestock and Fisheries productions sub-sector;
- Support infrastructures are put in place to enable actors of the Sub-sector EPIAH to get in proper manner all necessarily inputs to carry out their activities;
- Capacity building of the value chain actor are reinforced.
Part II – Description, organization and management of SOWEDA Livestock and Fisheries micro-credit scheme
2.1. Description of the Scheme
The SOWEDA Livestock and Fisheries Micro-credit scheme will adopt the same process as the one used by the former LFDP/SOWEDA with adjustments made to overcome challenges encountered in the pilot phase of that Project.
Apart from the micro-credit activities, as the answer to farmer’s problems encountered during the execution of the former LFDP’s micro-credit scheme, SOWEDA will carried out some support activities as appropriate. One of such activities is the upgrading of inputs production centers like Ombe piggery Center, Barombi-Kang Fish Farming Station to enable them guarantee the availability of breeding stock (piglets, fingerlings) and feed at affordable prices. Also the crop production sub department of the Establishment will intensify the cultivation of feed inputs as such maize, soya bean, cassava etc.
2.2. Granting of Credits to Producers
It should be recall that trough the three previous Projects executed by SOWEDA (IRDP, LFDP and Rumpi) various approaches to micro financing of producer’s activities were employed and valuable lessons have been learned. In this regard, the present micro-credit scheme will be implemented by the SOWEDA Sub-Department for Micro-Credit, Gender and Environment in collaboration with the South West Area Village Barns Cooperative Microfinance (SWAVIB MFI Coop-BoD) should it become necessary and depending on the absorption capacity of SWAVIB, other credible local Microfinance Institutions could be involved in the course of the process.
SWAVIB will sign a protocol agreement with SOWEDA based on clear terms of reference which will define their role (granting of loans to farmer, follow-up, recoveries and repayment of the amount recovered in the micro-credit special account.
Brief recall on the Villages Barns (SWAVIB):
These barns were created by the farmers with the aim to facilitate the mobilization of autonomous credit for farmer’s micro projects in the implementation of the RUMPI Project. This was achieved through the collaboration with a national NGO ‘‘Microfinance et Développement’’ (MIFED) as an implementation Partner (IP) of Rumpi Project during its execution from 2005 to 2012. At the closure of the Project, the 55 Villages Barns in the six Divisions of the Region to create a network of the Association called South West Association of Village Barns (SWAVIB) of the with a total saving of more than 5 billion (from 2009-2016) by the members. Only 80 million of this amount constitute external contributions. The volume of credit granted was CFAF 2,334,440,885 over the same period. It should be noted that in 2016 alone, just before the start of the on-going socio-political crisis that has extremely disrupted economic and social life in the North West and South West Regions, over CFAF 1.4 billion and CFAF 1.2 billion were mobilized as saving and loans respectively. The active membership at this time was 17,034 with 41.09% (7000) being women.
The management structure of Each of the Village Barns has as recommended by MINFI:
- A Manager;
- 03 Cashers;
- 01 internal Controller;
- A Management Committee of 05 members with at least 30% of women representation.
As stated earlier, on May 18, 2012, all the fifty-five Village Barns came together in a constituent assembly and created a network of Village Barns in the South West (SWAVIB). SWAVIB was legalized as an Association on June 12, 2015 and forwarded her files for Authorization to MINFI in August 2015. The process is still ongoing.
Due to the socio-political crises only 40 of the 55 Village Barns (VBs) are operational. However, with the gradual return to normalcy and with the start of implementation of the Presidential Plan for Reconstruction and Development (PPRD) of the two Anglophone Regions, the intensification of activities of the Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration Centre (DDRC) as well as the pursued of the decentralization initiative by the Government, it is expected that all the 55 VBs of the SWAVIB network now constituted into village counters of six Divisional Cooperatives will become fully functional again before the end 2021. Also, the implementation of the AIVDP envisages the creation of 30 new village counters (VBs) to extend the network to 85 VB or counters.
It should also be noted that within the framework of AIVDP micro finance sub-component which shall be dedicated to financing activities in crop domain, a CFAF 2.1 billion line of credit will be available. This though not directly available to support livestock and fisheries activities shall however be available to farmers of the Region who of course have activities in the Livestock and Fisheries sub-sector. Also substantial capacity building activities and other logistic shall be provided to SWAVIB by AIVDP which shall thus be of even to the SOWEDA micro-credit scheme.
2.3. Technical and material support package for the micro-credit scheme
The infrastructures to be used to produce the inputs need to be renovated, some have to be
constructed. The completion and proper utilization of these Infrastructures will enable SOWEDA to achieve its goals on the reduction of poverty in the rural zones within the Region.
The major difficulty encountered by livestock farmers is the scarcity of inputs (day old chicks, piglets, fingerlings, feeds etc.) leading to very high cost of production very marginal profit. Thus the farmers remain in the circle of poverty.
As a solution to these problems, SOWEDA will complete the upgrading of all inputs production Centers to perform their full role in this scheme, this will enable the farmers to make good profit out of their activities thereby breaking the poverty circle.
The following MINEPIA Centers will be upgraded by the scheme:
- The Barombi-Kang Fish Farming Station:
This Station was constructed by the former LFDP; unfortunately, the construction was not complete due to the closure of LFDP disbursement in December 2007. The intended capacity of this Station is 18 fish ponds for the production of fingerlings, a day old chick production unit, piglets’ production unit and a unit for the production of both livestock and fisheries feeds.
It is important to complete the construction work, renovate the areas damage during the socio -political crises, and adequately equip the Center for its optimum performance.
The rehabilitation and renovation of this Station will require the amount of CFAF703,729,012.
- Ombe Piggery Center:
This Center was intended to produce quality piglet and feed to be sold to farmers at subsidized rate. Its renovation and equipment is very important for it to become productive in this micro-credit scheme. The amount of CFAF 50 million will be needed for its renovation. This Center will require the amount of 50 million for its renovation.
- Feed mills:
Two feed mills will be constructed and equip in the course of executing the scheme. This will require the amount of CFAF244 000 000
- Raw materials for Animal feed:
SOWEDA will have to ensure the production of its own raw materials necessary for the production of animals feed (maize, soya bean, cassava etc.).
It should be noted that with or without these structures, the SOWEDA micro-credit scheme will go ahead. Farmers in need of credit to finance their activities will get the credit and procure the inputs from near-by Regions of Littoral, West and North West as they have been doing in the past. However, should MINEPIA be able to mobilize funding for the rehabilitation of these infrastructures for the production of breeding stock and feed, it will greatly enhance the impact of the credit scheme.
Advantages of the Scheme :
Ø Upgrade farmers’ incomes and activities;
Ø Limit the risk of lost for producers;
Ø Prevent small producers the risk of misusing the loan granted for other activities;
Ø Enable Suppliers to quickly replenish funds for future production;
Ø Push the actors to really get involved, to be more professional and serious in the execution of their activities;
Ø Enable SOWEDA to assess the level of execution of the micro-credit scheme and make any necessary adjustment.
Across all sector of its activities SOWEDA ensures the women and men concerns and experiences are an integral part of the objective, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of each programme and policies so that both women and men benefit and inequality is not perpetuated.