Position Description

Business and Financial Management Training
Location Tanzania
Department Programs
Employment Type Volunteer
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Business and Financial Management Training

Location: Tanzania
Duration: 23 Days

 

Problem Statement

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

  1. Assess the cooperative’s current financial management system and identify key challenges hindering the cooperative from not performing well
  2. Train cooperative leadership and staff on business and financial management
  3. Provide recommendations on best practices and action items to sustainably improve operations

 

Tasks to be Performed:

In the U.S.

  • Review technical documents for the program, including the Tanzania Country Project Description and host needs assessment report
  • Hold call with F2F Tanzania Country Director and the host organization to conduct a virtual review of assignment objectives and workplan and collect inputs
  • Review data and supporting documents to understand the current operations and strategy of the host organization
  • Prepare training materials based on stipulated assignment objectives and anticipated impacts

In Tanzania

  • Attend in-country orientation hosted by F2F staff
  • Hold kickoff meeting with host organization to review and finalize assignment objectives and plan
  • Meet and hold discussion with host organization staff, members and neighboring farmers to understand the cooperative business operations and their pre-existing levels of business and financial knowledge
  • Assess the current status of the cooperative’s financial management system and discuss their specific challenges and problems that need to be addressed
  • Finalize training materials and methodology based on feedback and observations from field and meetings with staff, members and farmers
  • Prepare and finalize for training materials
  • Deliver training to staff, members, and farmers from the host organization. The training will likely cover the following topics:
    • Business planning
    • Budgeting and forecasting
    • Managing finance
    • Obtaining financing and investments
    • Record keeping
    • Cash flow management
  • Review the cooperative and smallholder farmers’ business and financial records, budgets and support establishment of a sound record-keeping system as identified during training
  • Provide recommendations to the host organization and farmers with a focus on the promotion of the adoption business and financial management best practices and tools
  • Hold debriefing with host organization to share recommendations and action plan
  • Attend briefing with USAID Tanzania mission
  • Hold debriefing with F2F team
  • Draft final report for assignment

 

End of Assignment Report and other Deliverables required

  1. Trip Report
  2. Training materials and tools
  3. PowerPoint presentation describing the assignment, findings, recommendations and expected impacts

 

F2F Programmatic Pesticide Evaluation Report and Safer Use Action Plan (PERSUAP) Requirements:

Type 3 (the assignment will probably not have any pesticide issues)

  • The volunteer shall review the F2F Environmental Brochure and be aware of F2F’s legal requirements regarding the provision of assistance for the procurement or use of pesticides. The volunteer shall not recommend or provide advice on specific pesticides. 

 

Expertise of volunteer requested 

  • University degree in business management, finance, and financial management, agriculture, agriculture economics, business administration, economic development, or another related field of study
  • 10 years of relevant experience in finance, financial management, budgeting and/or agriculture economic and workforce development in emerging markets, including on-field experience
  • Demonstrated ability to work with smallholder farmers in developing countries preferablySub-Saharan Africa
  • Independent and strong interpersonal skills
  • Highly experienced in adult leaning especially proven knowledge on adult learning training methodologies like “CREATE”, quantitative and qualitative analytical methods, statistical data analysis and interviewing techniques
  • Creativity, critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Goal-oriented mindset and hands-on approach
  • Experience working in Tanzania and/or the region is preferred
  • Writing Skills: reporting requires good computer skills including, but not limited to, working and generating reports with MS Word. Experience with PowerPoint presentations is desirable
  • This is a United States government funded program. Therefore, for the purpose of achieving desired results in accordance with the work plan and submitting requisite reports, written and spoken fluency in English is required
  • Ability to work through translators in the field, however, is essential. This requires deliberation and sensitivity to cultural issues in communication
  • Experience with training and mentoring subsistence farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa preferred
  • Good writing and analytical skills, interpersonal communication and presentation skills (adult education skills), ability and desire to teach in both classroom and field settings

 

Volunteer Outreach

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:

  • Write an entry for the IESC blog
  • Post a photo, video, or text related to the F2F assignment on a personal website, blog, Facebook page, Twitter, or other social media sites. –And send a link to IESC staff
  • Send a press release to a local newspaper(s) in the volunteer’s hometown. (IESC can provide a template)
  • Write something for alumni or professional association newsletter, or other publication. (IESC can help as needed)
  • Give a presentation about the F2F assignment to colleagues, students, church group, rotary club, etc
  • Send an email about F2F to friends, family, or colleagues
  • Other

 

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.

 

 

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