British American Tobacco Nigeria Foundation (BATN Foundation) has revealed a four-year plan to invest seven hundred million Naira (N700, 000,000) to fund small scale farmers, young agric-preneurs and agric-related government interventions.
The revealation, which was made at the launch of the foundation’s 2018 – 2022 for Nigeria, has as its aim; ‘providing funding to help farmers in the small scale category to develop their rural agriculture enterprises from subsistence to commercial agriculture and to create young entrepreneurs interested in farming.’
“If we get it right in Agriculture, Nigeria would be unstoppable, but In the era of modernization, many farmers struggle with the pre-requisite needed to move from small scale to large scale agriculture and the inability to transit, threatens their ability to rise out of poverty,” says the Managing Director of BAT Nigeria; Chris McAllister.
McAllister added that BAT will continue to fund the projects of the foundation so as to ensure that human skills development for the adoption of good agro-economic practices and good access to markets to promote viable and sustainable businesses are in the fore: “As a responsible organization, BAT Nigeria will continue to provide funding and other necessary assistance to the Foundation to ensure that it is able to constantly support agricultural enterprises and improve the livelihood of those living in rural communities.”
The Executive Director of BATN Foundation, Abimbola Okoya also explained that the BATN hopes to achieve help the country achieve the United Nations’ 2030 development goal: “It is our belief that the Country Programme launched today would move Nigeria a thousand steps closer towards achieving the 2030 United nations sustainable development goals where livelihoods are improved, poverty is eradicated and there is zero hunger. A Nigeria that is safe for you and I, where entrepreneurial dreams come true and we all thrive, reaching our full potential.
Founded in 2002, the British American Tobacco Nigeria Foundation hopes to improve the lives of Nigerians living in rural areas – with special emphasis on smallholder farmers, their families and communities. So far, the BATN has implemented about 200 projects nationwide, supported 44 institutions and invested N1.5 billion in development activities. Also over 28,000 people have benefitted from its programmes as well as 62, 000 smallholder farmers.
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