Business and Financial Management Training
Duration: 23 Days
Cooperative development in Tanzania can be traced back to the 20th century when unfair marketing and processing practices led to the establishment of cooperative and associations, particularly in the agriculture sector. After independence in 1961, the government established a policy to make the cooperative movement an engine for agriculture and economic development. This policy promoted existing cooperatives and established new ones leading them to become an important tool for economic development in rural areas. Since then, cooperatives in Tanzania have been playing a great role in the development of poor farmers who often cannot easily access financial services, inputs, extension services, and markets. Cooperatives have been acting as a vehicle for smallholder farmers to access these services to improve productivity and livelihoods. Despite this, many cooperatives have failed to achieve their goals and fulfill their members’ economic and social needs due to a number of challenges including inadequate business and financial management skills, unfit cooperative structures, lack of working capital, lack of cooperative democracy and education, weak supporting institutions and the inability to compete in a liberalized market economy. This has led to poor business and financial decisions resulting in poor performance of the cooperatives.
One particular cooperative in Zanzibar, established in 2017, whose objectives include improving the economic and social status of its members and neighboring communalities by increasing dairy productivity, processing, and market access is struggling to perform at their maximum level for this reason. While the cooperative owns a milk processing plant with a capacity of producing 500 liters a day, it only manages to process 180 liters of milk a day due to a lack of appropriate skills in business and financial management. Their inability to reach their capacity constrains its members, farmers in the neighboring villages, and the market as they are unable to absorb the input from its members and thereby also fail to meet the market demand for milk products. Therefore, this cooperative wants to enhance the business and financial management skills of its staff and members to improve its operations and manage finances so that they can achieve their business goals.
As such, the Farmer-to-Farmer (F2F) Access to Finance Program in Tanzania is recruiting a volunteer expert (VE) to deliver hands-on training on business and financial management skills that includes business planning, budgeting, finance and investment, record keeping and cash flow management. This training will assist the cooperative to improve their operations, finances, and income generation. Ultimately, this will enable them to better support their farmer members and improve agricultural productivity and livelihoods in the community.
Objectives of the Assignment
Tasks to be Performed:
In the U.S.
End of Assignment Report and other Deliverables required
F2F Programmatic Pesticide Evaluation Report and Safer Use Action Plan (PERSUAP) Requirements:
Type 3 (the assignment will probably not have any pesticide issues)
Expertise of volunteer requested
USAID and IESC encourage all F2F volunteers to participate in public outreach. An important objective of the program is to increase awareness of Americans’ good work in developing countries. Volunteers should select at least one outreach activity from the list below, to be completed within two months of return to the US:
Description of the Program
The International Executive Service Corps (IESC) serves as the lead implementer for the Farmer-to-Farmer (F2F) Access to Finance Program (2018-2023) to address deficits in the financial ecosystem hindering investment and growth in agriculture for individual farmers, as well as micro, small, and medium sized enterprises through delivery of volunteer technical assistance. IESC has designed a thematic F2F program to generate sustainable, broad-based economic growth and create jobs in the agricultural sector with a special focus on assistance to women and youth. IESC is joined by Grameen Foundation, with outstanding experience in digital finance and technology for the agricultural sector, to provide voluntary technical assistance and address the gaps in the financial ecosystem
Funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, F2F initiatives generate rapid, sustained, and broad-based economic growth in the agricultural sector. These programs also promote international goodwill, understanding of U.S. foreign assistance programs, and private involvement in development activities. Through the F2F Program, USAID facilitates delivery of a broad range of U.S. agricultural expertise using U.S. volunteers who work with farmers, agricultural support systems and associations, and agribusinesses, in developing countries. The work of volunteers helps improve the quality of the agricultural sector workforce through training and advisory services provided to a wide range of agriculture sector actors. Volunteer assignments are designed to improve farm and agribusiness operations and agricultural systems
Focusing on Kenya, Tanzania, and Sri Lanka, the F2F Access to Finance Program will work with local partner organizations and volunteer hosts to field pro bono experts from the U.S. agriculture, corporate, and banking sectors to address systemic capacity constraints for farmers and lenders in each targeted country and unlock finance for improved agricultural production leading to utilization of agricultural technologies and increased sales and incomes.