Lupane, October 18 2017: The United States, through the United States African Development Foundation (USADF), is providing $100,000 over two years to assist the Lupane Women’s Development Trust (Lupane Women). The funding will enable the Matabeleland North-based organization to build the capacity of its members in governance and marketing, as well as develop existing agricultural infrastructure for poultry production and irrigation.
United States Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission, Ms. Jennifer Savage, officially handed over the grant in Lupane and stated her country’s commitment to economic development in Zimbabwe.
“The United States shares the desires of the people of Zimbabwe, who want to see a peaceful, democrat
ic, and prosperous Zimbabwe that provides for its people and contributes to regional stability,” said Savage. “This support from USADF, compliments our support to health, agriculture and economic empowerment across Zimbabwe and we hope that it contributes to efforts by women in Lupane to make a positive economic impact in their immediate families and the community.”
Lupane Women’s Development Trust is a membership organization with over 4,500 people in Lupane District,Matabeleland North. The organization works to improve livelihoods of its members through coordinated enterprises including handcrafts, poultry and vegetable production. The group sells its products to local and international markets. The Trust’s growth and profitability had been stifled by lack of access to appropriate inputs, working capital and inadequacies in business management and technical capacities.
With the funding support from USADF and technical assistance from Linkages for Economic Advancement of the Disadvantaged (LEAD) Trust, Lupane Women’s Trust will help its members acquire skills needed to operate as an organization, with full transparency and accountability through development of human resources and operations policy. Members will be equipped with skills on financial reporting and participatory monitoring. The organization will also upgrade its financial management systems and automated office systems to optimize business operations, including developing an online marketing platform. The funding will help the organization establish a revolving purchase fund to increase the quantity of their crafts.
USADF is an independent U.S. Government agency established by Congress to support African-owned enterprises which improve lives in poor and vulnerable communities in Africa. USADF invests directly in community enterprises, providing seed capital and local technical support to early stage agriculture, energy and youth-led enterprises in Africa.
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