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FIRE Africa Case Study: Farmerline

pic3 farmerlineThe Fund for Internet Research and Education – FIRE Africa – is Africa’s leading Grants and Awards programme designed to encourage, support and develop innovative online solutions to Africa’s education, information, infrastructure and communication needs.

Project: Development of a mobile technology platform to provide fish farmers, whose access to essential agricultural services is limited, with relevant and timely agricultural information and market access.

Organisation: Farmerline

Country: Ghana

Category: Access on Innovation, FIRE Africa Grants 2014

Making it Happen
Farmerline secured a US$ 10,000 FIRE Africa Grant in 2014 and used it to scale its operations to provide services to 3,000 farmers throughout the country. The team also ran workshops to teach farmers how to use the platform and show others how to use it, instilling a sense of self-reliance. “The objective of this project was to provide fish farmers with access to a timely and relevant package of agricultural information such as best aquaculture practice, weather reporting, finance advice, market prices and market access in their own language using a mobile messaging platform,” says project leader Attah of Farmerline. “During our first pilot, the price at which the farmers sold their fish increased by a huge 44% as farmers were better informed about the current market price of fish through our voice messaging platform. Another important aspect of this project is to enable us to collect agricultural data so we can continually improve our services and farmers can improve their production.”

Update 2015
Pic4 farmerlineToday, Farmerline provides voice-messaging services to an average of around 5,000 unique farmers each month. Since its launch, over 200,000 small-scale farmers across four countries have been reached and plans are underway to expand the service to the cashew and livestock industry. Farmerline also facilitates workshops and training courses to teach farmers and agricultural workers how to use mobile technology as well as how to collect and monitor data.

More about FIRE Africa

21156674863 397f019808 oFIRE Africa provides funds for projects, initiatives, tools and platforms that harness the power of the Internet to empower the local and regional community to solve the region’s unique online communications problems. Since we ran our pilot project in 2007 to identify innovative ICT solutions to the challenges faced by local communities, FIRE Africa has grown into a fully-fledged programme that has helped over 30 initiatives in 16 countries over the last eight years. Our first full round of Grants and Awards took place in 2013.

Calling all African innovators and Entrepreneuers
Have you got a great idea? Does it use ICT to solve an issue in your community? If your ideas are aligned with one of our funding categories, you could have the chance to win a FIRE Africa Award or receive a FIRE Africa Grant.

Calling all Potential Sponsors and Partners

FIRE Africa is actively seeking organisations and individuals to support Internet-based innovation in Africa. We have a wide range of sponsorship and partnership packages available and can tailor packages according to your needs. In addition to funding, FIRE Africa’s partners and sponsors offer their experiences, advice and regional insight so we are constantly aware of innovation initiatives taking place out in the community.

All photography (c) Farmerline.

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