IFAD / RURAL NIGERIAN WOMEN

Preview Language:   Original
30-Sep-2020 00:03:33
Rural women make up 43 percent of the agricultural labour force and, compared to men, are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 due to their work in the informal sector and their lack of access to productive resources, services, technologies, markets and finances. But when women are given equal access as men, they can be incredibly resilient to shocks, and be able to support their families and communities. IFAD

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STORY: IFAD / RURAL NIGERIAN WOMEN
TRT: 03:33
SOURCE: IFAD
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NUPE / NATS

DATELINE: AUGUST 2020, KONTIGORA, NIGER STATE, NIGERIA

SHOTLIST:

1. Aerial shot, Kontigora rice processing plant
2. Various shots, rice producer Asabe Damjuna washing hands at rice processing plant
3. Various shots, Asabe feeding water into the tanks with other rice producers
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Asabe Damjuna, Rice Producer:
“And how do we do it we have to observe the social distances, so we work in shifts while others work in the morning others in the evening.”
5. Med shot, Asabe moving rice from one tank to another
6. Close up, hands sorting rice in tank
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Asabe Damjuna, Rice Producer:
“So, we have not been out of production since the COVID-19 instead we work more harder. To meet the demand because the demand is so high.”
8. Various shots, aerial views of Kontigora Market
9. Various shots, Kontagora rice processors building and sign
10. Wide shot, woman at Kontagora rice processing centre walking to the centre
11. Med shot, Asabe closing boiling tank
12. Med shot, Aisetu with male work man milling and sorting the rice
13. Close up, rice going through processor
14. Wide shot, Aishetu raking rice
16. SOUNDBITE (Nupe) Aishetu Idris, Kontagora Rice Processor:
“At that time, we were selling our milled rice at the old market, then it was impossible to make sales of 20,000 naira in a week no matter how hard we laboured. So, by the time we deduct our expenses, we are left with nothing.”
17. Close up, man sealing bag of rice
18. Wide shot, Asabe visiting the market
19. Wide shot, market seller with Asabe outside his stall
20. SOUNDBITE (English) Ibrahim Aliyu, Kontagora Market Chairman:
“I have been buying Kontagora rice for less than a year.”
21. Med shot, men carrying bag of rice
22. SOUNDBITE (English) Ibrahim Aliyu, Kontagora Market Chairman:
“The rice the quality is very, very good, it is ok, it is very well prepared for cooking.”
23. Various shots, rice women getting out of the car
24. SOUNDBITE (English) Asabe Damjuna, Rice Producer:
“I plan is to build that place for other women, I went through what they are going through now. I had that feeling I'm thinking, how do I help them to come out of their problem? That is my mission.”
25. Aerial shot, paddy rice farmer
26. paddy farmer in the farm
27. Med shot, Asabe with bag of rice.

STORYLINE:

Rural women make up 43 percent of the agricultural labour force and, compared to men, are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 due to their work in the informal sector and their lack of access to productive resources, services, technologies, markets and finances.

But when women are given equal access as men, they can be incredibly resilient to shocks, and be able to support their families and communities.

Thousands of businesses across the world have been forced to close or have seen profits slump due to COVID-19 restrictions, but for the rice processing women of Kongatora in Niger state of Nigeria, not only have they survived, but their business has thrived with profits up by 40 percent.

COVID-19 may have altered the way they work, but it cannot mask the fact that business is booming.

While other rice producers had to stop working during the lockdown, Asabe and her fellow rice entrepreneurs drew on their production and marketing skills, and introduced a rota system that meant they could keep going throughout.

SOUNDBITE (English) Asabe Damjuna, Rice Producer:
“And how do we do it we have to observe the social distances, so we work in shifts while others work in the morning others in the evening.”

Asabe and her team used to supply rice to the local schools, but when they shut, due to the pandemic, one door may have closed, but another one opened.

Closed international borders meant that the market was no longer flooded with cheap imported rice. The result is the price of their rice has gone up over 40 percent.

But a decade ago it was a very different story for Asabe. She used to be a civil servant, but after her husband fell sick, they couldn’t afford to pay the bills or feed her family,

Asabe began processing rice on her kitchen floor in 2011, but it’s only since joining the Tudun Wada co-operative four years ago that things improved dramatically.

Set up with financial support from the Nigerian government and the UN agency IFAD, the International Fund to Agricultural Development, the Value Chain development programme has given her training in marketing and finance and access to this rice-processing centre. Here, she and the other women from the cooperative can use equipment such as steaming tanks, a parboiling shed and de-stoners. This has meant she can process 10 times as much rice as before.

Better quality and increased production has led to a huge leap in her earnings. She now earns in one day what she earnt in a whole month.

The new processing methods have also transformed the lives of other rice producers like Aishetu. A widow with 12 children she had been producing rice for 35 years without making any profit.

SOUNDBITE (Nupe) Aishetu Idris, Kontagora Rice Processor:
“At that time, we were selling our milled rice at the old market, then it was impossible to make sales of 20,000 naira in a week no matter how hard we laboured. So, by the time we deduct our expenses, we are left with nothing.”

The project has been so successful that many of the women have become local millionaires. Each woman is now earning on average 6 million Nigerian Naira a year (over 15,000 US dollars) more than senior civil servants in the region. They are able to send their children to school and buy homes and cars.

The women’s resilience and continued productivity during COVID, has also earned them a good reputation and new buyers in the local markets.

SOUNDBITE (English) Ibrahim Aliyu, Kontagora Market Chairman:
“The rice the quality is very, very good, it is ok, it is very well prepared for cooking.”

Their productivity has not only benefited the market sellers who can offer a better product, but also the farmers who receive extra money for their crop.

Now Asabe and her fellow entrepreneurs want other local women to share in their success and plans to build another small rice processing factory, helping others in the local economy.

SOUNDBITE (English) Asabe Damjuna, Rice Producer:
“I plan is to build that place for other women, I went through what they are going through now. I had that feeling I'm thinking, how do I help them to come out of their problem? That is my mission.”

The Tudun Wadaa cooperative is one of several rice processing groups supported by IFAD in the area. Part of the Value Chain Action Plan, it serves as the basis for rolling out sustainable activities to reduce poverty and accelerate economic growth. The objective is to sustainably enhance rural incomes and food security. The target groups include 15,000 smallholder farming households, 1,680 processors and 800 traders.

On 1 October, the UN marks 25 years since the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action – a blueprint to advance women’s rights. But according to the Gender Equality report reflecting on the anniversary, there is still a long way to go. Just 1 in 4 managers are women, and women aged 25-34 are still 25 percent more likely than men to live in extreme poverty.
Series
Category
Geographic Subjects
Creator
IFAD
Alternate Title
unifeed200930c
Asset ID
2565210