The World Food Programme (WFP) Liberia in collaboration with the Government of Liberia has ended a two day agriculture development project workshop in Bong County.
The workshop was held through the Ministry of Agriculture and Samaritan Purse International Relief, to enhance project implementation and smallholder food production skills of stakeholders.
Included in the workshop were cooperating and implementing partners, local government counterparts and beneficiaries.
Our correspondent in Bong County says the workshop was held under the Smallholder Agriculture Development Project (SHAD-P) initiative.
Implemented by Samaritan Purse International Relief, SHAD-P is funded by the Japanese government through the World Food Programme.
Speaking in an interview with this paper, the Program Coordinator of WFP Mr. Michael Musili Nzau stated that the project is aimed at supporting smallholder Farmers in Bong County in promoting resilience agriculture practices for staple food production.
According to Mr. Nzau, the initiative seeks to support vulnerable women and youths from approximately 1,200 households with the goal to organize them into viable agricultural producer groups.
He says the initiative seeks to increase access to improved farming inputs and agro-processing technologies’ and assist them to rehabilitate and utilize productive arable lands including small-scale irrigation facilities for increased production of rice and other staple food crops.
He encouraged farmers to always become the best producers to help reduce Liberia’s reliance on imported rice.
According to Mr. Nzau, WFP will always stand by smallholder producers to grow not only the food their families need, but to also sell the surplus and earn an income to meet other dietary and family needs.
“WFP is here to facilitate, to work with the government and partners to help farmers produce food they consume and be the best among the best,” Mr. Nzau assures.
Also speaking, Bong County Agriculture Coordinator Kollie R. Nahn urged farmers to focus more on lowland production.
Mr. Nahn states that doing so will be in line with the government’s objectives to make Liberia self-sufficient in food production, specifically rice.
“The Ministry of Agriculture will continue to support farmers to ensure that challenges they face are resolved on a timely basis,” he told our Bong County correspondent.
Some participants at the workshop extended commendations to WFP and partners for the timely training, saying knowledge is power.
The participants who converged at the training from across Bong County promised to implement what they have learned as part of effort to growing more food in Liberia.
By Joseph Titus Yekeryan in Bong–Edited by Winston W. Parley