Women in island areas engage in the fishing business mainly as fishmongers and traders. However, owing to the stereotypes – since fishing is seen as a men-only job, many women opt out of the business, while others have been forced into commercial sex activities in order to eke a living. To mitigate this challenge, Saint Ann Foundation undertook to implement the Agricultural Mechanization project with the view of creating alternative sources of livelihood for the women in island areas, reducing their dependency on men, enhancing their productivity, as well as bringing and maintaining them in the cycle of production. Under the agricultural mechanization initiative, beneficiaries are selected based on data obtained from a community survey and interaction with members of the community which enables us to have an in-depth understanding of the levels of vulnerability. Selected beneficiaries are then taken through modern agronomic practices by agricultural extension workers before they are given seeds and other inputs in readiness for the planting season. After planting, our monitoring and evaluation team embarks on the inspection of beneficiaries’ gardens/plots to ensure they have planted and taken good care of (weeded) the seeds given to them. The primary focus of this initiative is to reduce the cost of producing food as well as providing an alternative source of livelihood accruing from sale of produce at the end of each harvesting season by the beneficiaries.
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