Marrakech call from African Women in Agriculture and Art (AWAA)

Angelle Kwemo, Founder and President of Believe in Africa
Angelle Kwemo, Founder and President of Believe in Africa

The second edition of the Believe In Africa International Congress (“African Women in Agriculture and Art”) (AWAA) was held in Marrakech from May 8 to 10, 2018. This edition aimed at enforcing commitment made during the first edition by taking concrete actions of mobilization of resource, training and optimization of production capacities, processing and marketing of African women’s agricultural products. The main goal remains to work in the fight for food security, against global warming and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations.

We, the women in attendance declare the following:

  • We express our deep gratitude to His Royal Majesty King Mohammed VI, King of Morocco, for his commitment to the empowerment of African women.
  • We warmly express gratitude to:
  • Her Excellency Aïssata Issoufou Mahamadou, First Lady of the Republic of Niger and Founder of the Guri Foundation, Vie Meilleure, for chairing the second edition of the Women and Agriculture Forum, for her leadership and commitment to women empowerment, her presence, her encouragement and infallible support to women, especially in the agricultural and handicraft sectors and for its support for the and for being the honorary chair of the launch of the AWAA initiative;
  • Mrs. Nadira El Guermai, Governor National Coordinator of the National Initiative for Human Development (INDH) for her effective presence and dedication to the empowerment of Moroccan women and those of the rest of the continent, as well as
  • Her Excellency Mrs. Khoudia Mbaye, Minister of Investment Promotion, Partnership and State Development and Teleservices of Senegal, for her commitment to promoting women’s entrepreneurship;
  • Ms. Virginie Nkulu Nemba, Provincial Minister of Gender and Family of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) for her support and commitment to empowering women in disadvantaged areas and efforts to promote peace and security and development;
  • Mr. Mohamed Sabri, Acting Wali in the region Marrakech – Safi, for his hospitality and support;
  • Ambassador Sihammed Alphadi, Ambassador of Peace to UNESCO and President of the International Festival of Fashion and Arts (FIMA);
  • Mrs. Olga Johnson, General Manager, Energies for Africa and elected in Paris;
  • The leadership of the Office Cherifien des Phosphates Group (OCP Group) for their commitment and unwavering support to women empowerment in the agricultural sector and to democratization of access to inputs;
  • The Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) for its support to women income-generating activities;
  • UN Women, Initiative for Global Development (IDG) and US Africa Development Foundation and Coca Cola Corporation;
  • Our thanks also go to the national and international media that followed our work.
  • After two days of deliberations, the following resolutions were adopted:
  • We decided to unite our efforts by creating the platform named “AWAA”, an initiative aimed at creating a network of stakeholders dedicated to ensuring the effective empowerment of women in agriculture, with emphasis on those of the rural areas and underserved communities, enabling them to become productive, competitive and self-sufficient;
  • “AWAA” covers all the 4 agricultural subsectors namely farming, livestock, fisheries /fish farming and agro forestry and arts and handicrafts;
  • AWAA aims to continuously promote Africa’s socio- economic progress by enhancing the profile of women in agriculture in a bid to contribute significantly to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
  • AWAA’s mission is to continue to advocate for women farmers, to promote access to education, information and technology, access to financial services, business development services and credit and access to market;
  • We express to INDH, our wish to deepen our partnership.
  • We encourage the willingness expressed by INDH to collaborate with Niger in their poverty reduction program as well as with other African countries hosting AWAA groups;
  • We encourage women participation in the Human Development Forum scheduled to be held in Cameroon in late 2018, of which the INDH is co-organizer;
  • Niger will house the AWAA pilot project;
  • We support and accept invitations to collaborate on African women initiatives such as Sahraouia presented by Mrs. Laila Ouachi, International Festival of African Fashion (FIMA) presented by Ambassadeur Alphadi planned in Dakhla in November 2018, the Association of Women Entrepreneurs Morocco of Marrakech Safi region (AFEM);
  • All the participants of this edition are AWAA and commit to mobilize and take concrete actions to make this initiative operational in their respective countries.
  • Angelle B. Kwemo
  • Approved by the participants of the conference “African Women in Agriculture” representing the following 18 countries: Morocco (host country), Belgium, Benin, Cameroon, Canada, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, France, Gambia, Ghana, Luxembourg, Mali, Nigeria, Norway,  Senegal, Togo and United States of America.

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