The USAID-funded Agribusiness Competitiveness Activity in Tajikistan (ACAT) is currently underway. Winrock International, with a team that includes Making Cents International, uses a market-driven, private sector-led approach to reach ACAT’s goal of improving the competitiveness of Tajikistan’s agribusiness enterprises, leading to increased economic development, employment, and livelihoods. Making Cents focuses on increasing women and youth’s meaningful participation in ACAT activities.
To that end, Making Cents recently conducted an inclusion audit of select ACAT grantees to better understand the pathways towards increasing women and youth’s inclusion within leading agribusiness companies. For this inclusion audit, we interviewed directors/CEOs and employees from 13 organizations, including dekhan or family farms; micro, small, and medium enterprises; commercial cooperatives; and other value chain actors. We also are working with ACAT partners to develop and implement a strategy to help women producers of kurat, a local fermented milk product, reach national and regional markets. In addition, we continue to review the status of loan disbursements to women and youth and anticipate piloting a youth internship program with ACAT’s financial institution partners in the summer of 2021.