As a part of the MARKETS II Project, PfD strengthened the capacity of 20 agricultural producer associations in financial, administrative and group dynamics in Nigeria’s Delta, Edo and Rivers states, enabling them to effectively manage donor funds, provide valuable services that will enable recipients to increase their productivity. PfD has been collaborating with the MARKETS program since its inception, especially in the development of the Nigerian Agricultural Enterprise Curriculum (NAEC), which PfD has integrated into many of the business development services trainings it has conducted over the years for agricultural entrepreneurs.
In January 2015, PfD signed an agreement with Chemonics to participate in its USAID-funded MARKETS II project to provide institutional capacity building to selected smallholder agricultural producers and processors in three states in Nigeria. The Organizational Capacity Assessment (OCA) Tool was adapted by PfD and endorsed by the technical staff of MARKETS II Project which was administered to each of the selected groups. The OCA Tool was designed specifically for the selected smallholder agricultural associations to diagnose the strength, weaknesses and opportunities available to and existing within these groups. The OCA Tool was designed to assess capacity of the associations in six key areas/sections – governance, human resource management, financial management, monitoring, evaluation and reporting, sustainability, public relations and partnership.
The first MARKETS activity was a highly successful program that fostered private sector-led agricultural productivity, advanced agriculture and trade policy reform, improved farmers’ access to new agricultural technologies, and strengthened both public and private institutions. MARKETS II extended the MARKETS model to improve the performance of Nigerian poor rural farmers or smallholders, their incomes and nutrition through proven private sector demand driven market interventions. The program focused on smallholder farmers who cultivate between 1 and 5 hectares of land, up to 80% of whom are women.