ACDI/VOCA and Dr. Willard’s®

ACDI/VOCA is Expanding Opportunities Worldwide

Dr. Willard’s® is excited to be partnering with international aid organization ACDI/VOCA to explore using our PlantCatalyst® in Zambia and Mozambique.  We’ll be starting with some basic studies to determine how best to apply PlantCatalyst® in those two countries then work from there to expand usage and develop partnerships.  Here’s some information on ACDI/VOCA and why you should care about the great work they’re doing all over the world.

ACDI/VOCA is a Washington, D.C.-based private non-profit organization that focuses on achieving economic development and growth, higher standards of living and an overall better life for communities around the world. Founded in 1963, it has focused on making improvements in more than 146 countries, in areas such as community development, financial services, enterprise development, food security and agribusiness. They currently have 54 different projects in 32 countries.

Agricultural Cooperative Development International (ACDI) was established by U.S. farm cooperatives to help farmers in developing countries. ACDI has made farming improvements in Poland, India and Africa. Volunteers in Overseas Cooperative Assistance (VOCA) gathered volunteers, such as presidents of banks, coffee roasters and specialists in grain storage to help developing nations.

ACDI and VOCA merged in 1997; its mission is to “create a world in which people are empowered to succeed in the global economy.” Their goal is to provide business opportunities by teaching business practices to the communities of developing countries.

The organization’s goals include promoting social and economic changes around the globe. They do so by working with experienced partners who oversee the resources being developed in the communities of international beneficiaries. In order to eliminate poverty through economic growth, the organization’s partners work to improve “local capacities, enhanced opportunities, and vibrant, sustainable communities, cooperatives, and enterprises.” They teach the beneficiaries the best ways to change or amend their practices to be part of the global economy, thereby reducing poverty worldwide.

ACDI/VOCA creates projects that have the highest standards of accountability; they have a main development goal and clear results. To make this mission a reality, they partner with partners in the public and private sectors to set up proven and replicable methods to promote local ownership in developing countries to improve poverty levels.

In order to uphold their mission around the world, ACDI/VOCA upholds the same principles of diversity, fair employment practices and a rewarding experience in their Washington, D.C. office and abroad. They value communication, teamwork and a culture where all of their 200 U.S. staff members and 1,100 international employees are encouraged to participate.

Some examples where the ACDI/VOCA currently works are:

Mali – Mopti Coordinated Area Development Program

The rural Mopti region in Mali is extremely underdeveloped and has been affected by natural disasters, both floods and droughts. As a result, 94 percent of people there live in poverty. To better the population’s lives, the organization is working with the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF USA) to help local farmers overcome agricultural challenges, which will improve the lives of the community and help end the poverty in that region.

Philippines – Mindanao Productivity in Agricultural Commerce and Trade (MinPACT) Project

ACDI/ VOCA is executing this four-year project to help cocoa, coconut and coffee farmers raise their incomes by better managing their farms, increasing productivity and the quality of their crops, as well as making them more accessible to markets. This project is designed to help the citizens of Mindao, as up to 36 percent residents there live in poverty.

Mozambique – Livelihoods Empowerment and Development in Mozambique

ACDI/VOCA implemented the HP Billiton Sustainable Communities (BSC), which supports the Livelihoods Empowerment and Development (LEAD). This project focuses on improving poverty rates in rural Mozambique, where over 70 percent of families live below the poverty line. The farming practices in the rural region are outdated and the connection to the markets is poor. The organization is working to address these concerns and to raise incomes by 30 percent.

For more information about ACDIVOCA, click here.



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