Farmers in Sierra Leone attend business and entrepreneural skills training

20 March 2012

The Sierra Leone Chamber of Agribusiness Development (SLeCAD) in collaboration with IOM Netherlands, has concluded a three weeks training in Business Development, Communication Management and Web Management skills development for farming organizations in the Western Area.

The training session was conducted by trainers from the Netherlands – under the country’s Temporary Return of Qualified Nationals Programme (TRQN), which is an initiative of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) Netherlands, funded by the Dutch Foreign Ministry.

The aim of the programme is to strengthen institutional capacities in Sierra Leone, through the deployment of Sierra Leonean experts living in the Netherlands, known as ‘resource persons’.

The programme was delivered in Sierra Leone by Mr William Clarkson, Mr Abdul Conteh and Mr Ernest Smith – specialising in Business Development, Communication Management and Web design and Web management respectively.

Photo: Left to Right – Ahmed Nanoh (Executive Sec. SLeCAD), Abdul Conteh (IOM/TRQN), Noellen Barber (SLeCAD Consultant), Ernest Smith (IOM/TRQN) and William V. Clarkson (IOM/TRQN

The objectives of the training were; to improve the business and entrepreneurship skills of farmers in order to be able to run profitable businesses; enhance the strategic use of information and communication in agribusiness development; and to link farmers to the information superhighway through web development and web management.

Twenty participants from various farmer organizations attended the training, helping them to understand how to develop a business plan; run profitable, successful and sustainable businesses in their communities; and how developing a marketing communication plan.

The training has helped participants learn how to develop and manage a website.

At the end of the training session, participants expressed satisfaction that the learning materials were simple and comprehensible. They also expressed appreciation to SLeCAD and IOM for affording them the opportunity to learn new skills that are crucial for the development of their businesses.

The Executive Secretary of SLeCAD – Mr Ahmed Nanoh, said that his organization together with partners (including IOM, UNIDO, FAO, IITA, PAGE, CARE, and IFAD) is determined to fight poverty as well as promote the expansion of local and international value chains.

He said that this could be achieved through the development of appropriate skills and utilisation of technologies by farmers, so as to improve their productivity and production – creating jobs and generate income. 

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