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CARE-led USAID Takunda Project hosts high level Policy dialogue

By Staff Writer

THE CARE-led USAID Takunda Project, in collaboration with the Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN) and the Agricultural Research Council (ARC) will Thursday host a Community Animal Health Worker (CAHW) Policy Dialogue in Harare, Zimbabwe.

This timely event will narrow on Community Animal Health Workers as key players in the development of the livestock sector.

The USAID Takunda Project, a five-year (October 2020 to September 2025) project funded by USAID has been working to improve livestock production and productivity among other interventions in Manicaland and Masvingo Provinces.

This includes supporting rural small holder farmers improve crop and livestock production and productivity.

In the area of improving livestock production, a key component has been the engagement of 175 CAHWs jointly with the district livestock officers across
the project’s four districts of operation namely Buhera, Chivi, Mutare Rural and Zaka.

In working with the CAHWs several issues have come up such as capacity, mandate and engagement with public and private stakeholders. The impact of these CAHWs in supporting livestock production is quite compelling, necessitating a need to engage key stakeholders so as to effectively address the issues listed above.

To this end a policy dialogue that brings together stakeholders from the government, nongovernmental organizations, and the local community to discuss ways to strengthen
the existing public and private livestock extension systems is being convened.

Participants will explore policy recommendations and models to better support CAHWs in addressing the ongoing challenges of poor animal health and production.
The smallholder agricultural sector in Zimbabwe comprises more than 90 percent of the nation’s livestock, making it a vital component of the rural economy.

“By convening this dialogue, we aim to identify actionable strategies to expand the access to livestock extension for small holder farmers to enhance livestock production and productivity, contribution to household incomes and well-being,” said Walter Mwasaa, CARE Zimbabwe Assistant Country Director – Programmes.

The event aligns with the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development’s efforts to promote policies such as the Agriculture Sector Policy, Climate Resilient Policy, Livestock Production and Growth Policy, and Water/Drought Mitigation Policy.

This dialogue provides an opportunity for cross-learning and collaboration to increase the impact of these initiatives.

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