BASATINE’s One-Year Highlights: Empowering Farmers and Reviving Lebanon’s Agricultural Sector
Mar 24 2023
The BASATINE project celebrated its one-year highlights event at the Halba Municipality Council Hall, underlining its achievements and successes over the past year. The event was attended by stakeholders, beneficiaries, and representatives of the different organizations involved in the project.
The BASATINE project supported 1,000 farm households in need of inputs in the past winter season with critical farm inputs worth about $500 per household through e-vouchers. Working with Online Money Transfer (OMT), the project developed an online portal for e-voucher redemption of farm inputs, providing transparency and accountability in the delivery of inputs to farmers. This portal is currently supporting over 3,200 farm households in the spring season, providing them with seeds, fertilizers, tools, and irrigation materials.
The project also supported 50 small and medium-scale agri-businesses with critical in-kind and technical support worth $7,000-$25,000 per business. Furthermore, the BASATINE project trained 3,000 farm units (26% female-led) in Sustainable Agriculture and provided technical training for its staff on various development approaches that will support farmers. This includes Farmer Field and Business Schools, Savings and Loans approaches, and developing technical curricula for delivering these approaches at the field level.
The BASATINE project is currently developing a mobile app, led by Berytech, to address farmers’ needs and promote digital literacy. The app will mainly help farmers access information about the weather, market prices, and agricultural techniques, provide consultancy services and develop effective and sustainable linkages with other market actors
Al Majmoua is leading the design of a product that will help agricultural micro-lending to farm households, ensuring that small-scale farmers have access to credit and financing to support their livelihoods.
Additionally, several studies have been launched to inform the program and sector, including on Land Tenure, Value Chain and Environment Assessment, and Gender Equality and Social Inclusion, to mention a few. These studies will help the BASATINE project understand the needs and challenges of farmers and develop appropriate interventions to support them.
The event included speeches from Mrs. Anne Isambert, Deputy Director at AFD Beirut, Mr. Pierre Valiquette, Head of Mission at CARE Canada, Mrs. Rania Frem El Khoury, Executive Director, and board member of Georges N. Frem Foundation, and H.E. Mrs. Anne Grillo, French Ambassador to Lebanon. The program’s success was a testament to the importance of investing in sustainable agriculture and supporting small-scale farmers and agri-businesses. The BASATINE project is making a significant impact on the lives of farmers and their families, and it is hoped that it will continue to support the sector in the years to come.