by Marie Kauna – EMTV Online, Port Moresby
Agricultural activities are one primary income earning opportunity that many Papua New Guinea’s are engaged in.
And helping to educate and boost the local’s with knowledge, skills and equipment is one way to boosting their production operations in whichever farming they are engaged in.
Oxfam PNG is one of those organisations that continue to help many local farmers with such initiatives to boost their farming skills.
In July this year, the organisation launched the ‘Honey Hotline’ Extension Service for bee farmers around the country, an initiative to boost bee farmers operations.
Last week, the organisation in partnership with the community businesses in Jiwaka, Eastern and Simbu provinces, launched its new PNG HARVEST Program in Goroka, Eastern Highlands Province.
Image: OXFAM PNG
The primary aim of the initiative was to provide extension agricultural services as well as the technical knowledge to help local farmers in their farming operations. And areas of focus included production, access to profitable markets and to increase income for the farmers.
With illiteracy rate been high in the country, it is very difficult for many whom, engaged in farming activities to use modern knowledge to improve their productions, market access and even the idea of increasing and saving money from their production earnings.
According to Oxfam’s Liveliood Programme Manager David Shields, when stressing on financial management skills said, financial management skills is not enough for rural families.
Oxfam together with PNG HARVEST partners to improve this, will provide financial training and skills for the farmers to help them set personal financial goals and to sustainably manage their income earned.
The farmers will also be allowed to open savings accounts to help save money if they want to. This helps them to understand the importance of saving money and also apply the practice of saving money.
Account opening will be made possible via the members that Oxfam is supporting to become banking agents with Mibank. These three members will help set up new savings accounts for the rural farmers, especially those who do not have any existing savings accounts.
Oxfam’s Programme Director, Charlotte Kakebeeke when commending the program said ‘the program will train men and women to manage their money better to improve family farming businesses and financial inclusion.
PNG HARVEST and Honey Hotline are two initiatives Oxfam PNG has launched to help farmers in and around the country and continues to develop more sustainable initiatives to help boost farmers and their farming operations.
Image Source: OXFAM PNG