Management of Solidaridad Global Network, a Non-governmental Organization, has launched its multi annual strategic plan dubbed “Ambition 2020” to promote sustainable and inclusive, environmental and economic innovative development.
The strategic plan is aligned with other development goals to address global development challenges in the agricultural supply chain, food security and livelihood of the vulnerable in society.
The five-year plan, which span from 2016 to 2020, focuses on four thematic areas- robust infrastructure, good practices, sustainable landscapes and enabling policy environments.
The organization is a network of nine regional hubs across five continents aimed at promoting sustainable development through interventions that impact positively on communities, agricultural supply chains, climate resilience and national economic development.
A speech read on behalf of President John Mahama at the launch of the event, commended the organization for the initiative, saying the plan is an effort in the right direction to improve food production, accelerate agricultural modernization and natural resources in the country’s developmental agenda.
He said the plan would attract partners for regional and continental to prioritise areas of national interest in addressing the growing demand of food facing Africa and other parts of the world.
President Mahama said the network is positioned to support countries to achieve the United Nations targets of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS), when the planet is saddled with many development challenges including climate change.
He said even though Agriculture is the backbone of African’s economy, the sector still continues to witness food crisis and hunger irrespective of the agricultural prospects.
President Mahama said over 300 people living in Africa live on less than a dollar a day and as such there is the need to adopt sustainable production and consumption to feed the growing population.
He said the organization has helped to promote youth development in cocoa farming through the MasterCard foundation, helped in the training of COCOBOD staff and supported the national public and private partnership for cocoa extension.
He said these efforts has demonstrated the organization’s commitment in ensuring sustainable development in the supply chain and assured development partners of the country’s commitment to partner Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to implement its transformational agenda.
The President said the plan should be a basis for engagement with development investors for a change agenda and explore partnerships for business prospects.
Touching on the strategic plan on the thematic areas to achieve sustainable development, Mr Nico Roozen, Executive Director of Solidaridad, said good practices consists of development, testing, implementation and dissemination of good agricultural, mining and industrial practices.
He said these activities should result in increased knowledge of good practices and better administrative and entrepreneurial skills, saying applying these practices would optimize social, environmental and economic performance of farmers.
Mr Roozen said robust infrastructure consists of organizing the market and sector uptake of the proven concepts from good practice interventions and that innovations brought by civil organizations supported by public funds, need to be reinforced and mainstreamed by creating robust infrastructures for inputs and services, credits and equity.
He was of the view that once good practices on the farm are in place and a robust infrastructure around the farm is established, the next interest is the surrounding landscape to strengthen the capacity of stakeholders to effectively resolve sustainability issues and competing claims in landscape.
Mr Roozen said government must create an enabling policy environment to achieve inclusive sector transformation towards sustainability and contribute to attaining the UN SDGs targets.
Madam Mariam Dao Gabala, Chair for International Supervisory Board Solidaridad Network, said the world now needs solution-oriented CSOs with an international vision for change that includes clear regional contributions.
She said the plan which involves global thinking perspectives, would enable the network to aim for systemic change based on alliance with global companies, international institutions, government, CSOs and financial institutions
“Our network structure gives us boots on the ground and the capacity to deliver change that matters by working with millions of farmers, miners and industrial workers in 52 different countries, cultures and languages”, she added.