With support from generous partners like you, we are developing a replicable, rural agricultural program in Uganda that utilizes robust data and strategic partnerships to enhance our service for smallholder farmers, especially coffee and grain farmers, that we can begin to implement in additional African countries where we serve rural families. Project achievements include: Supporting coffee, grain, and oilseed farmers by profiling their farms, opening savings accounts and providing loans to expand their operations. Today, 21,600 coffee and grain farmers have been digitally profiled which helps them gain critical knowledge of the size and requirements of their land. Additionally, 13,930 farmers have opened active savings accounts, more than doubling the established 2018 goal of 6,500, and 3,600 farmers have invested Opportunity AgFinance loans to expand or improve their operations, surpassing the target to reach 3,450 by 12/31/2018.
Improving productivity by training farmers on Good Agricultural Practices (GAP). Cumulatively, 21,600 farmers have been trained in Good Agricultural Practices through the program; reaching 333% of the 12/31/2018 goal of 6,500.
Increasing Digital Financial Inclusion of Rural Families by conducting group trainings in digital financial services, and providing clients with training via voice message services. All 21,600 Ugandan farmers who have been profiled have also received training in the use of digital financial services.
Rolling out the new digitized platform. We have completed the customization of the new digitized agriculture finance platform which captures data about farmers, crop supply and demand, crop inventory levels and other information that is key for working with suppliers and buyers.
Empowering and training clients via Interactive Voice Response services. We conducted research among Uganda staff and farmers to customize trainings via voice messaging on cell phones. The scope of the research was to understand which client segments respond to which types of messages. For example, client responses were segmented by age, gender, or urban vs. rural, to identify which types of messages they preferred among those tested, including chatty/informal, serious/business, long or brief. The findings are guiding the content of voice messages, identifying client knowledge gaps, determining the content that resonates most with clients, and identifying the triggers that motivate clients into action. Based on findings, Interactive Voice Response messages have been translated into three local Ugandan languages and delivered to farmers via their cell phones.
Because of your support, Opportunity can better serve rural clients on their path out of extreme poverty. Thank you!