Grace is a 60-year-old farmer in rural Ghana. Strong, kind and self-determined, Grace is motivated by hopes for her children, like so many of us.
“I grow maize, okra, garden eggs (African eggplant), and pepper. I have five of my own children but there are five other children that I also take care of, so I have 10 children. And, I have six grandchildren.”
As self-reliant as Grace is—she is even putting two children through nursing school with the proceeds from her tiny farm—there are times when she needs a hand up.
“Because I am putting the children through school, sometimes I am hard up. When growing maize, there are times when you need to apply fertilizer and other things to help it to grow faster and there is no money to do this.
“Our lead farmer informed me that there was a farmers’ association. He asked if I was interested in joining it…. I said ‘yes’.”
With that, Grace connected with a support group of other farmers, and started working with Rachael, her Grameen Community Agent. Racheal is part of a local field agent network that helps smallholder farmers improve their yields, income and food security. Equipped with satellite data and Grameen’s specialized mobile platform, Rachael can quickly understand and analyze a farmer’s crop potential to deliver sound agricultural advice. She can also help clients like Grace procure loans to purchase farm supplies like quality seeds and fertilizers.
“When you join an association and you get something good out of it, you are happy to be in it,” said Grace. “We have received improved seeds, which I have grown on a half-acre. The yields are very high, and this makes me very happy. I will grow these seeds again.”
Grace is excited about her successes – which include growing award-winning crops – and she is finally optimistic about her family’s future.
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