The Green Coast Agriculture Project (G-CAP), a local non-governmental organization (NGO), working in Liberia’s agricultural sector, has stressed the need for the establishment of a center that will provide agriculture business services to local farmers in Bong County.
G-CAP’s program coordinator Francis Bendoe told the Daily Observer recently at his Gbarnga office that a survey conducted in the county shows that local farmers are in need of business services that will help improve their productivity.
“The sole purpose of the Enterprise Services Center is to provide agricultural business development services (ABDS) to farmers and rural entrepreneurs to start-up or expand their commercial businesses,” Bendoe said.
He stated that services will include training to promote entrepreneurship and to improve business planning and management skills; technical advice on production and postharvest handling; collecting and sharing market information and marketing ideas; assisting clients in the preparation of business plans and loan applications to access credit and providing access to agro-equipment and transport services among others.
According to him the establishment of the ESC will help to improve food security and reduce poverty in the lives of Liberian farmers.
Mr. Bendoe mentioned that once a center is established in the county, farmers can access those needed enterprise services, adding that the significant of the center has prompted the local authorities of Bong County to donate a piece of land to his organization to construct the center.
Commenting on the extension services rendered to farmers, he mentioned that they have reached ninety-five communities in five districts in Bong County with extension services to strengthen the skills of subsistence farmers.
Meanwhile, the G-CAP program coordinator said that the lack of logistic is a serious constraint facing his organization.
“We want to appeal to the government and its partners to build our capacity with logistics to enable us reach more farmers,” he pleaded.
Bong County is one of Liberia’s productive agricultural regions situated along regional development corridors of Liberia, crucial in promoting intra and inter-county commerce. Farming activities in this growth corridor are expected to improve food availability and access for Liberians.