Connecting Farmers with the Knowledge and Resources They Need
By Iganachi Razaki Omia, Managing Director of Omia Agribusiness Development Group Limited, an EWS-KT partner
WEST NILE REGION, UGANDA — My name is Iganachi Razaki Omia, and I am the Managing Director of Omia Agribusiness Development Group Limited, operating in the West Nile Region of Uganda. We help farmers access agricultural inputs, training, and markets. We have been working closely with East-West Seed Knowledge Transfer Foundation (EWS-KT), and they have really been beneficial to the farmers we serve, as well as to us as a business. We and the communities we work with have particularly benefited from three areas related to training.
First, EWS-KT offered training in vegetable production to our staff at Omia Agribusiness Development Group Limited. This training empowered us to transfer this knowledge to farmers. Due to this training, the farmers we are working with now have more knowledge on how they can best take care of their vegetables. This helps the local economy of these communities and builds agricultural markets where there weren’t any before.
The second beneficial aspect of the training has been for our village agents. For some time, we have been trying to build a network of village agents who can help us in providing our services to rural farmers so that they don’t have to come to town to get agricultural inputs. We took some of our village agents to one of the learning plots established by EWS-KT, and through the learning plot, they were trained on how to take care of the vegetables. Note that this hands-on training was not in an office or a training hall but in the field, and they learned step by step. Now they have personal experience with new techniques to pass on to rural farmers.
The third benefit is in the direct training that is given by the EWS-KT’s Technical Field Officers to the farmers, because when they do these training, they demonstrate innovative methods for growing vegetables and explain what agricultural inputs are needed. This has led to an increased demand for appropriate agricultural inputs by the farmers to produce healthy vegetables and increase their yields.
At Omia Agribusiness Development Group Limited, we want to thank EWS-KT for tirelessly working with us to ensure that farmers have the knowledge that they need to be able to profitably grow vegetables.
Nutrition and Income Generation Intervention (NIGI) improves access to and consumption of nutritious crops and increases income for refugees and hosts in refugee settlement areas in the West Nile Region of Uganda. This project is co-funded by Netherlands Embassy Uganda and is managed by EWS-KT in collaboration with Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation.