Last week, Chief Operating Officer of CLUSA International, Amy Coughenour, presented in Washington, D.C. before a forum of international development professionals at the largest and most active chapter of the Society for International Development (SID). Her presentation focused on the exceptional results of CLUSA International’s innovative nutrition-led approach to combating food insecurity through the organization’s implementation of food security projects in Senegal, Africa. NCBA CLUSA is the lead implementer in the USAID-funded Yaajeende project, a five-year, $40 million initiative of USAID Senegal, one of the first projects of the Administration’s flagship Feed the Future initiative.NCBA CLUSA’s cutting-edge, market-driven approach to agriculture and food security solutions integrates nutrition at every point of the agricultural value chain, providing long-term sustainability to communities and empowering them to become less reliant on subsistence agriculture and become active participants in successful agricultural business.
Coughenour fielded numerous questions during and after the presentation from highly engaged participants wanting to learn more about the organization’s outstanding performance in the field. Of particular interest to attendees was NCBA CLUSA’s distinctive approach to incorporating the development of what the organization has coined “Community-Based Solution Providers” (CBSP). CBSPs are independent entrepreneurs based in target communities who create linkages between the private sector and producer organizations. Over the course of the project, CBSPs will improve the food security and nutrition of 1,000,000 individuals across 60 rural, impoverished communities that are typically hard to reach and have trouble accessing suppliers and markets. To date, 220 CBSPs have marketed and distributed nearly $1 million in agricultural and nutritional supplies and services to smallholder farmers, farmer cooperatives, and communities.