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CONNECT takes the bank to the farm gate
by: RAP 3      on: 30 Jun, 2017

For the first time Prabhu Bank Limited (PBL) have taken the bank to the farm gate and CONNECT is delighted to confirm that PBL has delivered value chain financing loans totaling NPR 2.95 million to 117 ginger farmers.

In an unprecedented move to improve financial inclusion, Prabhu Bank staff travelled from Dhangadhi to remote areas of Doti to open bank accounts and disburse loans to ginger farmers who belong to our business partner, Organic Mountain Flavor’s supply chain.

CONNECT’s intervention, linking OMF, PBL and hundreds of farmers, is increasing financial inclusion and offering pathways to sustainable livelihoods for the poor.  Watch this short animation to learn more.

CONNECT has facilitated the start up of 228 women owned micro enterprises
by: RAP 3      on: 28 Jun, 2017

Earlier this year, Unilever Nepal Limited agreed to scale-up their partnership with CONNECT and work towards appointing 600 Hamri Didis across CONNECT’s core Districts by 2018.  As the CONNECT programme reaches the end of it’s first year of implementation the partnership is well on its way to meeting this target.  To date, 382 HDs have been appointed, 228 of which are trading.

Jumli Beans sourced directly from small farmers now on sale in Bhatbhateni and Saleways
by: RAP 3      on: 27 Jun, 2017

CONNECT has been working with Aastha General Store, Jumla to build their supply chain, encouraging long term purchase agreements with farmers and sourcing retail markets.  We are delighted that Bhatbhateni and Saleways both recently took receipt of 2 metric tons of beans and are now offering for sale Jumli Beans in their Kathmandu stores.

Jumli beans, perceived as a specialty product by Nepalis and foreigners alike, typically retail at NPR 250+ per kg. By reducing the layers between producers and end markets CONNECT has reached this consignment to consumers at a maximum retail price of NPR 155 per kg. CONNECT’s intervention aims to increase commercial demand for Jumli Beans and improve the livelihoods of farmers in Jumla.

An export market strategy for Nepali ginger
by: RAP 3      on: 23 Jun, 2017
Christina, a student on Exeter University’s OnePlanet MBA is in Nepal to work with our MSME partner Organic Mountain Flavor Limited on an international market discovery exercise to strengthen business development capabilities and author an export market strategy for ginger and other organic food and spice products from Nepal. Christina comes with 18+ years of experience with the Government of Canada in areas of rural and economic development and export policies.
Earlier today, in a well attended, interactive session Christina discussed her findings to date and hopes for OMF with RAP, DFID and IMC colleagues.
CONNECT's collaboration with Unilever Nepal has been recognised for its work to promote sustainable livelihoods
by: RAP 3      on: 12 Jun, 2017

The partnership between CONNECT, Unilever Nepal Limited and Prabhu Bank Limited has been recognised for its work to promote sustainable livelihoods for women by The Association for Consulting and Engineering Awards 2017. IMC Worldwide, the UK firm implementing RAP3 and convenor of the partnership accepted the accolade at the Awards ceremony held in London, last week.  

This innovative model of extreme collaboration between a donor programme and the private sector is paving the way to economic independence for hundreds of rural women in the remotest parts of Nepal. 

DFID annual review visit to Dailekh and Kalikot
by: RAP 3      on: 11 Jun, 2017

Colleagues from DFID Nepal were in Dailekh and Kalikot last week to undertake their annual review of RAP 3.  The review included a visit to three of CONNECT’s partners Pawan Agriculture Collection Centre, Hatemalo Seed Production Cooperative and Belpata Dairy Cooperative where DFID Nepal met with the leadership teams as well as key players in their value chains.

Introducing CONNECT's first interns
by: RAP 3      on: 08 Jun, 2017

The CONNECT team is growing!  Happy to welcome two interns, Niva Shakya and Milipa Thapa who started their one month induction training on 1st June 2017. Niva, has a background in management from Kathmandu University and before joining RAP volunteered with International Citizen Service and Milipa recently graduated from the Asian University for Women, Chittagong, Bangladesh, majoring in Economics with a double minor in Development Studies and Mathematics. After completing orientation, Niva and Milipa will start their postings in CONNECT’s core District

A winning public private partnership
by: RAP 3      on: 07 Jun, 2017

Delighted that IMC Worldwide have been shortlisted for Collaboration Champion of the year at The Consulting and Engineering Awards 2017 for UKaid funded RAP3 CONNECT’s partnership with Unilever Nepal Limited and Prabhu Bank Limited. With fantastic support from Unilever Nepal and through close collaboration we have selected, appointed and trained hundreds of women in the Mid and Far West of Nepal to trade as Hamri Didis, Unilever’s direct to door sales agents. This innovative model is paving the way to economic independence for hundreds of rural women in the remotest parts of Nepal.

PACC formalises trade agreement with Regmi Mandi
by: RAP 3      on: 02 Jun, 2017

CONNECT’s business partner Pawan Agriculture Collection Centre (PACC) has formalised a rolling one-year trade agreement with Regmi Mandi.  This agreement commits Regmi Mandi to buy 73 metric tons of fresh vegetables.  With contracts like this in place PACC can encourage farmers in their downstream supply chain to increase production by offering buy-back guarantees.