Zadrima - Rural and Legal: Supporting farmers and women entrepreneurs with legal and administrative aid to combat informality and obtain financial support .
Despite efforts to reduce rural inequalities, empower farmers and promote rural women entrepreneurship, there is a gap between legislation and implementation, efficient access to funding, and the connection between women farmers and financial aid for rural development can still be improved. Inequalities remain socially accepted and tolerated, especially in rural areas, where low access to information, support schemes and financial aid/resources are more deep-rooted. This poses a challenge for the implementation of effective practices on access of women farmers/entrepreneurs to available funding instruments. Even though women’s participation in tertiary studies is higher than men’s, a gender-based segregation of entrepreneurs persists, and men are overrepresented in agricultural practices. There is limited participation of rural women in both vocational training and knowledge and information sharing about legal and administrative procedures on [EU/donor] funding for, agriculture, farming and rural development: According to UN Women Albania (2015) only ten percent of beneficiaries of extension services are women. According to FAO (2016): Women in rural Albania are overrepresented in informal employment, unpaid work in family farming and in domestic and reproductive activities; They have limited access to entrepreneurship, markets and decision-making, while social mobilization is weak and associations almost non-existent. This proposal seeks to bring a quick and effective response to identified reasons for the low participation of rural women in farming, and in particular in extension services training, and eventual legal and administrative advice when applying for financial support. Expected results to be obtained through local capacity development, legal and administrative support for women farmers in rural areas: accurate understanding of agriculture policy, market structural rules and trends, financial aid rules and correct grant/loan application.
A1. Establishing the project implementation team and conducting the training needs analysis: Set & agreed procedures of work and quality assurance; Feasible calendar of activities; Methodological & operational plan of activities; A database of the stakeholders; Draft questionnaire on women farmer’s SWOT to facilitate the assessment.
A2. Assessing the needs target groups: Questionnaire data collected and analysed; Workshop proceedings on the assessment results; Review of the training plan and the list of activities;
A3. Drafting training pack, conducting ToT for local facilitators and training sessions in 12 regions: Training dossier with the session agenda, purpose and what training will be provided for whom, training materials, notebook and pen. Proceedings/Report. 12 facilitators based in each region will act as local advisers on pre-screening needs/problems/ infringements for legal and administrative advice and refer duly in project coordination office/ legal aid centre.
A4. Organising a national round-table on funding for rural farming and women entrepreneurship: Overview of rural development, rural women and farmers needs in Albania with particular focus on continuous learning, capacity development, accurate understanding of funding instruments/sources/rules and effective grant application standards;
A5. Drafting guidelines/training manual on “Legal and administrative standards and instructions on funding for rural farming and women entrepreneurship in rural Albania”: For women farmers and interested and stakeholders on how to understand, implement and access the funding resources and learning/legal advice options in order to effectively apply and obtain financial support for agriculture and rural entrepreneurship.
A6. Inception of the E-learning Programme, web-forum and quarterly newsletter for women farmers/entrepreneurs: “‘Promoting rural farming and women entrepreneurship through effective legal and grant administration training and advice in Albania”.