At an event recently held at Nyamashato Primary School in Murehwa for the third phase of the “Fit for Life” programme, the Barclays Bank of Zimbabwe Managing Director, Mr Sam Matsekete handed over $70 000 to the Zimbabwe Farmers Union.
The programme, which aims to contribute to financial inclusion and food security, will educate and impact on young farmers from across the country.
The bank has been able to reach more than 30 000 young farmers through a strategic partnership with the ZFU. The partnership commenced in February 2015 with an investment of about $500 000.
The additional funding that Barclays is providing to the ‘Fit for Life’ programme seeks to assist an additional 4 000 farmers such that they develop financial capability and make informed and effective decisions with all of their financial resources.
It also seeks to improve their understanding and application of farming business concepts; develop linkages with large enterprises and provide the youth with start-up grants to assist the trained young farmers to set up their businesses.
The guest of honour, Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education Principal Director Mr Jacob Gonese, said he was impressed with the partnership as it has given birth to projects that have improved the capacity of youths in agriculture.
He added that the project requires persistence and determination from the beneficiaries for it to be successful.
Speaking at the official launch, Barclays Managing Director, Mr Sam Matsekete said, “When we initially partnered with the Zimbabwe Farmers Union in 2015, we were clear that we wanted to make a difference in the lives of what we believe is the most important element of our country — our youth.
“Together with the Zimbabwe Farmers Union, our aim with the “Fit for life programme” has been to assist young farmers to overcome some of the challenges they are facing, challenges that might have inhibited them from accessing basic financial and business skills for sustainable growth in their projects.”
The “Fit for Life” programme is supporting the youth at grassroots level so that they contribute to socio-economic solutions.
Barclays Bank Zimbabwe has pledged to continue engaging in sustainable community projects that will have a long term impact on the society. Barclays operates in over 40 countries and employs approximately 85 000 people.