Inclusive training and education will propel sustainable development in the region

Ensuring inclusion in training processes is key

Training on good agricultural practices allows producers to improve their performance in the efficient use of available resources. The inclusion of women, men and youth in these technical training opportunities is important, since this knowledge helps them to improve their crop management, take care of the environment, improve their employability and even increase their participation in decision-making in the value chains in which they operate.

Empowering women and youth through inclusive training is essential to boost economic growth and promote social development. For example, according to the United Nations, allowing equal access to resources for women farmers could reduce the number of hungry people in the world by up to 150 million.

The use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) facilitate the inclusive training process.

Improving access to training and information for our partners

A few years ago, we began to generate and use digital solutions in conjunction with field training to improve access to and use of data for effective decision making. In 2020, ICTs facilitated our delivery of technical assistance during the lockdown.

This year, part of the regional strategy is to implement an internal training project on gender and social inclusion (GSI). We will train champions to support the implementation of GSI affirmative actions and to become empowered to build GSI indicators for initiatives in the field.

We will deliver GSI training through webinars open to the more than 40 Solidaridad staff in the region:

  • Learning about GSI: we will review the origins, history, concepts, policies and legislation related to the GSI.

  • Working with inclusion: we will study the methodology and tools for gender analysis, Solidaridad’s gender policy and strategy.

  • Who am I?: we will examine definitions and exercises on awareness, identity and self-esteem.

  • Our differences make us the same: we will analyze gender roles, capacity building and facilitating environments for GSI, among other topics.

  • Planning with a gender lens: a workshop in which we will identify gender affirmative actions and build achievement indicators with a gender perspective.

Collaborating with Ciudad Mujer to train Grupo Jaremar employees is one of the steps we have taken to strengthen GSI in the region.

First steps taken in inclusive training

The inclusion of women and young people is one of the principles of sustainability with which we validate all Solidaridad interventions. We have already taken a few steps to lay the foundations for GSI in our inclusive training:

  • We offered the certificate course in “Efficient, sustainable and inclusive production of sugar cane”, for the first time in 2019 in San Luis Potosí, Mexico. This course trains participants in the knowledge and use of technological tools and in theoretical and practical matters applicable to the sustainable management of sugarcane.

  • In the RSPO Certification Project in Guatemala, we gathered the sons and daughters of producers in an inclusive training process regarding palm oil management.

  • Through multiple exchange experiences, training workshops and technical assistance activities, we have partnered with REDMUCH to empower and make more visible the work that women do in the cocoa value chain in Honduras.

  • Also in Honduras, we offer inclusion workshops to workers of the Grupo Jaremar palm oil companies, to develop GSI leadership skills throughout the company and motivate them to carry out gender-focused actions at the family, labor and community levels.

This year we are ratifying our commitment to GSI through the aforementioned internal training, which will allow us to scale and promote initiatives in the field.

The diploma in San Luis Potosí included methodologies of theoretical teaching in the classroom on the mechanization of the sugarcane harvest.

Inclusive training and empowerment of regional small producers and workers going forward

Starting in 2021, Solidaridad will work on its “Reclaiming Sustainability” strategy through the Government of the Netherlands’ Power of Voices programme. This political framework, created to strengthen civil society, pays special attention to the realization of women’s rights and gender equality while helping to amplify the voice of citizens to defend their rights, reduce inequality and combat corruption.

Solidaridad will provide inclusive training to develop leadership skills in the coffee and palm sector in Honduras. We will strengthen capacities in actors of both commodities so that— through monitoring of regulatory frameworks and national and international standards— they can address priority issues specific to each sector. In the case of coffee, the focus will be on fair value distribution within the chain. In oil palm, we will promote the right to decent work.

In addition, training will be prioritized to sensitize men, women and youth about GSI and its importance for the sustainable development of the region.