Empowering Women in Business.

3,900

women have participated in training events

To improve her operations, she applied for a small loan from the Fostering Agricultural Markets Activity project, a partnership of USAID, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, and Chemonics. She also received technical training from an expert onsite agronomist.

Mrs. Ugarak’s peers recognized her success. The Independent Association of Agricultural Producers of Upper Vrbas Region voted her the Best Raspberry Farmer for 2010.

“I was not a farmer, I was a housewife. My daughters were grown up and able to take care of themselves, so I had some free time on my hands and had to employ myself with something.”

Amra Ugarak, a program beneficiary

Rather than resting on her successes, Mrs. Ugarak is dedicated to improving her business. She uses every opportunity to gain additional information through training and knowledge-sharing. Accordingly, she is working with the project to prepare her berry farm for GlobalGAP implementation, an international farm assurance program that translates consumer requirements into practice. She runs a successful family project that now involves her husband and both daughters. She even hires 10 to 12 additional workers to help with harvesting. For Mrs. Ugarak, berry growing has become a way of life and an integral part of her family’s and community’s livelihoods.

The project improves competitiveness among agricultural producers and agribusinesses by expanding production, processing, and sales. Through training and small loans, it works to empower women like Mrs. Ugarak to grow their businesses and compete better in the international market. The project has actively sought to include women in its activities, and as of February 2013, more than 3,900 women have taken part in training events.