07 December 2013, Shelfo Village, (Awasa Zuria Woreda, Sidama Zone, SNNP region), Ethiopia - Mr Bekele, 57 years of age, grows carrots for home use as well as for market production. He sells about fifty percent of his crop at market. His wife is Bontu Boche, their daughter Belainesh Bekele (18 y.o.) cooks the carrots for lunch, with enjerra, their staple food.
The projects supported by IFAD, FAO and WFP provide an array of complimentary support to small-scale farmers and cooperative unions. Food-security interventions are boosting access to some basic financial services, including bank loans, which were previously unavailable to agricultural cooperative unions and their members. Increased access to those services is, in turn, helping the farmers build a more food-secure future for themselves and their families. Her Majesty Queen Máxima of the Netherlands (UN Secretary General Special Advocate for Financial Inclusion, UNSGSA) and the three food agencies of the United Nations are teaming up in Ethiopia and Tanzania to raise awareness of how access to financial services - such as bank accounts, short-term credit, small loans, savings and insurance - can help improve the lives and livelihoods of smallholder farmers and the rural poor.