France is on the brink of providing aid to enhance agricultural education in Nigeria, with a special focus on empowering women in the sector. In order to achieve this goal, a group of representatives from France, consisting of leaders from agricultural technical colleges, have arrived in the nation with the intention of offering their valuable knowledge and skills. Abuja witnessed a significant event of a workshop exclusively dedicated to stakeholders. The theme of the initiative is Empowering Women in Agricultural Technical Education and Apprenticeship (WATEA) in Nigeria Project.
This event aimed to bring together representatives from various sectors. France and Nigeria jointly embrace their commitment, as affirmed by Emmanuelle Blatmann, the French Ambassador to Nigeria. The embodiment of this dedication can be observed in the project at hand. According to her, the initiative aimed to provide young women with the necessary tools to grow their confidence and expertise in contemporary agricultural practices, oversee farm operations efficiently, and foster sustainable food systems through a deeper understanding of agroecology.
Promoting the invaluable exchange of knowledge between both countries.
Furthermore, Nigeria has every reason to celebrate the upcoming departure of a prestigious group of top executives from esteemed agricultural institutions, as they prepare to embark on a journey to France in the following week. This remarkable voyage greatly signifies the unwavering dedication to promoting the invaluable exchange of knowledge and the fortification of bonds connecting the two countries’ educational systems, she expressed with delight. The presence of the delegation highlights the significance of global collaboration in promoting progress in agricultural education.
She expressed firm belief that this visit will result in favourable consequences for all parties involved. While Nigeria delves into French institutions and interacts with their academic community, Blatmann possess utmost certainty that this interaction will not merely augment Nigerians’ comprehension of the French education system, but also open up avenues for productive partnerships between both nations. In 2020, the French Ministry of European and Foreign Affairs granted 200,000 EUROS to the SEFAN/SWEAN Project. This project, as stated by Ms. Blatmann, is now being extended and referred to as the WATEA project.
WATEA has been granted a sum of nearly 600,000 EUROS.
In view of WATEA’s goals, she observed that one of their key objectives was to facilitate the migration of Nigerian female students towards French agricultural technical institutions. Additionally, they aimed to offer vital assistance to small and medium-sized enterprises in the agriculture and agribusiness sectors, specifically those led by women. In order to enhance the appeal of agricultural technical education and apprenticeship, modern agricultural techniques, agricultural production, and farm management will be imparted to upcoming cohorts of young female technicians.
The French representative emphasized the project’s objective of establishing formal administrative and legal connections between agro-industries and technical agricultural institutions, with the aim to enhance vocational training procedures and expedite the job prospects of graduates. The French Government has granted WATEA a sum of nearly 600,000 EUROS. Currently operating in 6 States, namely Anambra, Enugu, Jigawa, Kano, Kwara, and Oyo, WATEA has achieved remarkable advancement as it steps into the third phase of its execution. This success is owed to the primary partner in the implementation, the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA).
Enhancement of young women’s employability would be achieved.
Additionally, WATEA’s primary goals revolve around more than just recognizing and tackling the technical requirements of agro-industries. It also strives to create a supportive atmosphere that promotes gender equality, while actively combating discrimination and violence. Recruiting and empowering young women in the agricultural sector is dependent on the vital combination of a pioneering teaching approach and an appealing atmosphere. The enhancement of young women’s employability would be achieved by the WATEA Project, which in turn would play a crucial role in fostering the growth and advancement of the agricultural sectors in both Nigeria and France.