Project Factsheet
Tools for » Support for new decentralization initiatives and production stimulation in Cuba
Project ID:00067266Description:MDGF-2096-D-CUB Private Sector
Fund:
MDG Achievement Fund
Start Date *: 27 Oct 2009
Theme:
MDGF Private Sector Devt
End Date*: 28 Jun 2013
Country: Cuba Project Status: Financially Closed
  Participating Organization:   Multiple
About

Overview:

The Government of Cuba established food production as a key strategic objective as the island imports 80 percent of food consumed.  In line with this new strategy, the joint programme (JP) supported two national processes that aim at reducing the country's dependence on food imports, namely: the process of reorganizing agricultural policy, and the Municipal Local Development Initiative (IMDL). In order to have an impact on the most vulnerable populations, the JP focused on five municipalities (La Palma in Pinar del Río, Marti Matanzas, Sancti Spiritus Yaguajay Rio Cauto in Granma and El Salvador in Guantánamo). In addition, the JP sought to promote gender equality through affirmative action for women.

The JP supported the development of “Municipal Development Strategies" through an inclusive and participatory process which included the involvement of the private sector (cooperatives, farmers and artisans). After a process of analysis 26 projects were identified (of which 5 promoted gender equality), harmonizing the activities of each result in the JP. "Training of trainers" was undertaken in areas identified. Some examples of the impact of strengthening training and IPAs include: opening of new specialties/professions; increased number of agricultural technical training centers from 6 to 10; five courses were developed at the national level, with the inclusion of gender issues and environmental education; library materials and tools for grafting and pruning.

Strengthening of the technical Government services was done through the creation of 4 mechanized agricultural brigades which resulted in greater operational capacity and profitability for recovery of idle lands for the benefit of both state and non-state farmers.

Increased production volumes were observed in the five municipalities as a result of the JP in line with the country's priorities in terms of staples like rice, beans, meat and corn, which contribute to food security. For example, in the town of Río Cauto productive capacity increased by more than 60% at the end of the program compared to the base year (2009).  In addition, the JP supported a total of 60 production cooperatives reaching more than 5,830 producers, of which 14% were women.

The JP sought to establish synergies with other programs and enhanced inter-regional cooperation promoting mutual learning on challenges and opportunities to activate endogenous resources and enhance the performance of the municipal government as coordinator and facilitator of territorial development.

Training in production techniques and food processing benefited over 11,000 farmers, of which 33.8% were women.

In addition to training decision makers and other local stakeholders on gender issues, a municipal diagnosis was undertaken in each municipality, and gender projects were identified and implemented reaching 177 women of the 5 boroughs.

Increased income, both through identification and creation of new jobs (457 jobs, of which 148 are women), as well as increased sales resulting from increased production was observed in all five municipalities. For example, in the CCS Hermes Rondon cooperative in Río Cauto, 300 new jobs were created, of which 18.9% were for women.

 

Outcome 1:

Local government capacity to integrate the private sector in local development increased (5 municipalities).

 

Outcome Avhievements:

  • "Municipal Development Strategies" were developed and updated the in the 5 municipalities of JP. The intervention included an inclusive process in partnership with other actors such as the Centre for Local and Community Development (CEDEL) and the National Institute of Economic Research (INIE)  to strengthen the methodological aspects of local strategic planning. The involvement of the private sector in the formulation of strategies was an innovative element. These strategies were legitimized by municipal governments.
  • Locally, 26 projects were identified (of which 5 were made affirmative action to promote gender equality), harmonizing the activities of each product in the JP with the dynamics of municipal management.
  • A diagnosis and training strategies were developed through a participatory approach. The diagnostic process showed that the Agricultural Polytechnics (IPAs) and mixed centers needed to be strengthened. "Trainers of trainers" for technology teachers, municipal methodologists and teachers from local universities for its multiplier effect.
  • Strengthening of the technical Government services include the creation in 4 municipalities (La Palma, Martí, Cautious River and El Salvador) of mechanized agricultural brigades which resulted in greater operational capacity and profitability in a process of recovery of idle lands and savings in production costs for non-state farmers.
  • The program provided equipment and technical assistance to strengthen services such as veterinary, pesticides, seeds, irrigation and drainage and sale of inputs for horticulture.

 

Outcome 2:

Private sector production/diversification of services and goods increased (5 municipalities)

 

Outcome Avhievements:

  • The JP supported a total of 60 production cooperatives the 5 reaching more than 5,830 producers, of which 14% were women.
  • Support to the production units was primarily in the form of supplies and equipment, as well as capacity building and technical assistance to promote the transfer of technology, the introduction of new techniques and product diversification.
  • The JP sought to establish synergies with other programs, in particular the Programme for Local Support to Agricultural Modernization in Cuba (PALMA), and the JP to combat anemia in vulnerable groups in Cuba, with the primary value added resulting in joint training, joint missions,  joint knowledge products and local commercialization mechanism. Another significant aspect of this strategy was the involvement of universities as providers of services for municipal governments.
  • The JP sought to enhance inter-regional cooperation promoting mutual learning on challenges and opportunities to activate endogenous resources and enhanced the performance of the municipal government as coordinator and facilitator of territorial development.
  • Training in production techniques and food processing benefited 11,224 farmers, of which 33.8% were women. The training in business management and cooperative leaders reached 4,512 cooperatives and producers, of which 37% are women.
  • In addition to training decision makers and other local stakeholders on gender issues, a municipal diagnosis was undertaken in each municipality, and gender projects were identified and implemented reaching 177 women of the 5 boroughs.
  • The JP promoted  the first artisan cooperative in Cuba.
  • The Credit Systems of the Municipal Local Development Initiative (IMDL) was enhanced by the JP. As a result,  five local economic initiatives focus on food production and environmental perspectives were approved and initiated, as a way to contribute with the Local Municipal Development Strategies.

 

Outcome 3:

Access to services and goods increased for the population of the municipalities.

 

Outcome Achievements:

  • Strengthening of the collection, distribution and consumption chains to secure increased access and better quality agricultural products, evidenced by increased municipal collection, markets and points of sales, as well as better distribution and marketing of food.
  • Strengthened management capacity and coordination at the local level in the 5 Municipal Delegations of Agriculture through the provision of supplies and equipment to promote efficiency and effectiveness in their efforts.
  • Sensitization workshops were developed to increase awareness on the role of cooperatives and individual producers as dynamic actors in economic activity.

 

Best Practices:

  • One of the main achievements and cornerstone for obtaining the results was the systemic articulation of state and non-state actors.
  • Knowledge Management (training, systematization, transfer of knowledge, techniques and technologies and permanent support to the direct beneficiaries).
  • Working Groups with staff from international agencies, national agencies, local governments and direct beneficiaries.
  • Joint M&E and an M&E task force that provided ongoing advice.
  • Local Government as key leadership figure for the JP.
  • Synergies with other programs and projects. Linking of JP to key national strategies.
  • Introduction of new machinery and to support the new role of municipal Agricultural Business as a service provider, while also benefiting the individual farmers.
  • Systematization of JP experiences such as the articulation of state and non-state sector and the Credit Facility, allows for building on lessons learned and support future endeavors.

 

Lessons Learned:

  • A complex, multi-sectorial program implemented at local level requires more time for implementation and a preliminary preparatory period.
  • To streamline processes and achieve the results it is advisable to concentrate investments in the early stages/years.
  • It is necessary to establish appropriate links between local actors and participating institutions from the start of the program.
  • Comprehensive initial training of participating staff improves credibility of the program.
  • It is key to define efficient procurement mechanisms to meet program needs from the beginning.
  • A communication strategy should be developed from the beginning.
  • Local stakeholders participation in the identification of endogenous resources and economic development projects was key to achieving the objectives of the JP.

 

More details can be found in the documents below.

Recent Documents
Key Figures
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