The FFBS approach also enables farmers to access markets and sell at competitive prices, collaborate with one another, and engage in beneficial and efficient decision-making. FFBS transforms the status and recognition of women by supporting them to be successful farmers, producers, businesspeople, leaders and agents of change. Such support includes:
- Facilitating participatory capacity-building on sustainable agriculture, marketing and nutrition.
- Demonstrating improved agricultural practices to the rest of the community via demonstration plots and farmer-to-famer field visits and encouraging “learning by doing.”
- Promoting gender dialogues on topics such as land and input access, decision-making (household and nutrition), workload sharing, income control, role models for men, interpersonal relations, listening, gender-based violence (GBV) and envisioning empowerment.
- Facilitating linkages to markets, land allocation and inputs acquisition.
- Participatory monitoring that promotes self-assessment by farmers/producers.
The FFBS support and training cycle follows the seasonal calendar, ensuring that learning and other activities do not require extra commitment from already time-constrained women farmers. FFBS builds on existing village savings and loan associations (VSLAs) and producer groups that already have established social capital
and basic governance mechanisms. The model is based on adult learning principles that offer practical lessons through participatory approaches. Farmers can then translate this learning and adapt it into their own fields, creating ownership and sustainability of adoption. The FFBS model integrates multiple components including sustainable agriculture practices, market engagement, gender and equity, food and nutrition security, group empowerment and monitoring and evaluation, which ensures that the knowledge, skills and practices of women farmers are built upon in an
Over the next six years, CARE will scale up the FFBS approach in at least 35 countries (18 of which will be new) to improve the income, resilience, nutrition, agricultural yields, and gender equality of 25 million producers and their families. This will be accomplished through four pathways.