What was the defining moment that led you to this innovation?
The resources needed by the micro, small and medium scale farmers or agricultural enterprises in the country to operate effectively are far beyond their reach. Women are in the majority in the farming and agricultural sector especially on the micro and small scale levels and they use obsolete methods which give them poor returns and harm the environment. The youth, especially the female, are thus moving away from this sector which has a lot of employment and financial potential if well utilized. Many farmers do not know or have access to local and international markets for their produce so in times of harvest, severe post harvest losses always result. Christian Volunteer Service International has been in the forefront in the advocacy for rural and small scale farmers to adopt proper farming techniques from the nursery to the markets. The need was therefore found to enter into partnerships with various co-operatives, women groups and farmer based associations to provide services to assist farmers in the vegetable and fruit sectors to operate optimally using appropriate technologies P.A. L.M.S. was thus evolved with a motto: “Linking agricultural technologies effectively” and with three leaves joined together in an intricate way as its logo. With ownership of the structures and services in the hands of the farmers and their active involvement at all stages of the program, we are able to get them to patronize and use the program to turn their fortunes around for the better.
Tell us about the person—the social innovator—behind this idea.
Pastor Joseph Brenyah has been credited with a lot of social innovation. He is a versatile industrial chemist, a naturopath, an experienced administrator, clergyman and social entrepreneur. Between 1990 and 1998, he established Brenlab International Limited in Nigeria and developed blueprints for 3,000 small scale ventures of relevance to indigenous communities. He wrote for the weekly Business Concord magazine of Nigeria for five years under the Small Scale Technology column and helped to establish many small scale ventures there. He has organized a lot of local and international seminars, workshops, conferences and training programs in management, HIV/AIDS, water and sanitation, small-scale industrial technologies, co-operatives and social entrepreneurship. Many for profit and not-for profit organizations/social ventures have been formed under his direction for effective social impact. He is presently in charge of Christian Volunteer Service International, a non-governmental organization and Moringa Oleifera Farms and Industries Limited, a social enterprise/venture. Productive Agricultural Linkages and Market Systems program was initiated in 2008 by him in response to perceived needs by some women groups. Other recent programs he initiated include the Ghana Malnutrition Annihilation Program (Ghana MAP) to combat malnutrition quickly by encouraging people to resort to a balanced diet especially with Moringa, a powerhouse of essential nutrients, Rural Agricultural Improvement Network (RAIN), a network of small holder farmers, farmer and community based organizations/associations, research institutions and civil society organizations in agriculture, Moringa Oleifera Cultivation and Marketing Program (MOCAMP), to assist in rural agricultural development and industrialization and lately the Green Journey.
How did you first hear about Changemakers?
Personal contact at Changemakers
If through another source, please provide the information