60 Women farmer FPOs to benefit $2 million grants from Walmart Foundation
The Walmart Foundation and PRADAN, an NGO, announced the launch of the ‘PROWFIT’ project on Thursday to enhance the livelihoods of small and marginal farming households, particularly women farmers, in the tribal regions of eastern States.
PROWFIT, which stands for ‘prowess of organized resources and women-farmers for transforming FPOs into autonomous institutions,’ aims to support 60 women-led Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) during a 30-month period.
According to a press release, the project will be paid for by a $2 million grant from the Walmart Foundation. Its goal is to give about 120,000 women the tools they need to start small businesses that will earn a total of $32 million each year.
‘PRADAN’s projects like PROWFIT and LEAP align well with our efforts in India to strengthen FPOs by helping them increase volume, quality, and sustainability of production while building and deepening their connections to markets,’ said Julie Gehrki, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at the Walmart Foundation. The latest investment in PRADAN will allow them to reach even more rural women while also strengthening their effect through sustainable yield increase and revenue source unlocking.’
As part of the initiative, the FPOs will get help making business plans, building the necessary systems and processes, and putting in place governance structures for their operations. They will also get help with technology and money through partnerships with service providers and links to national or state government programs that can give them more help.
PRADAN’s prior project, ‘LEAP,’ serves as the foundation for PROWFIT (Livelihoods Enhancement through Market Access and Women Empowerment). The Walmart Foundation provided a $1.9 million donation to assist LEAP, a two-year project. LEAP has had an influence on the lives of 45,000 smallholder women farmers in Jharkhand, Odisha, and West Bengal.