To meet this goal, with generous funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, WE-GO will partner closely with the Ethiopian Ministry of Agriculture to strengthen institutional systems for gender integration within the ministry and will increase income for women farmers by implementing gender transformative activities and diversification in horticulture and livestock.
CARE will provide technical support to and strengthen the Women, Children & Youth Affairs Directorate (WCYAD), allowing it to be the central coordination hub to carry out the Gender Equity Strategy for Agriculture in Ethiopia (GESA) by integrating gender transformative programming and accountability within the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA).
WE-GO will also use a real-time, learn-by-example demonstration program to work directly with 5,200 women farmers in Agricultural Commercialization Clusters (ACCs) in two regions. CARE’s Farmer Field and Business School approach will showcase tools and integrated gender transformative approaches that have proven effective and sustainable in CARE’s agricultural development work in Ethiopia and throughout the world. This outcome will demonstrate the effectiveness of gender-transformative, market-driven approaches and will help institutionalize them within the MoA’s service delivery; including in the Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency (ATA) which is led by ACCs. The MoA and CARE will be equal partners in WE-GO. Both will share responsibilities to implement the project and be accountable for the results, while MoA is the ultimate owner of the project. The Ministry has been actively involved since the design phase of this project, and the targeted directorates of the Ministry, including state ministers, have contributed to program design through consultations held with important stakeholders.
CARE’s experience has shown that women are catalysts for change. Programs that build women’s agency, amplify their voices, and economically empower them have tangible, long-lasting benefits in their households, their communities, and the greater society. Creating an environment where women and men contribute equally – and reap equal benefits – is the critical next step in transforming the agriculture sector in Ethiopia.