Solidaridad, an international civil society organisation, founded in 1969 for facilitating the development of socially responsible, ecologically sound and profitable supply chains, has established a savings and loans groups, tagged the Village Savings and Loan Association to help farmers in Ghana access financial support.
This project is possible through Solidaridad’s Satellite for Business project. Satellite for Business project is an interactive digital platform facilitating access to finance for smallholder cocoa and oil palm farmers by providing farmers’ credit scores to lending institutions to aid credit decisions. It also provides financial and advisory services to smallholder cocoa and oil-palm farmers in Ghana.
The project is expected to last for three years (2019-2022) and is funded by the Netherland space office.
The project was birthed to solve the financial constraints of smallholder farmers whilst aiding farmers with precision and reducing the risk involved in farming. The project is expected to impact 141,400 farmers.
The platform also provides geo-based data (location of the farm, farm size, and total yield) to financial institutions to assist their credit decisions.
On the other hand, the farmers gain improved productivity by utilising advice received from the platform via calls, text messages and voice messages. The platform further improves farmers income by providing market information.
The program coordinator for Satellite for Business project, Akua Benewaa said: “So far, we have profiled and assessed the credit risk of over 50,000 consented farmers in the Eastern, Central, Western, Western North, Ashanti, Bono and Ahafo regions of Ghana”.
She further said that the data would be used to create tailored and low-risk portfolios for bankable smallholders.