Livelihoods and Enterprises for Agricultural Development (LEAD) in Uganda
JAA, as part of a team, implemented the Livelihoods and Enterprise for Agricultural Development (LEAD) project in Uganda, a Feed the Future activity. This program aimed to expand sustainable economic opportunities for improved livelihoods, thus increasing the transformation of the rural agricultural economy. The program met these objectives by assisting farmers and related SMEs in commodity value chains so that they gain improved access to markets and more empowered relationships with suppliers, processors, and traders, resulting in higher incomes. JAA supported this project through a combination of long-term and short-term technical assistance. Our inputs supported an improved aquaculture value chain by providing long-term staff knowledgeable of innovative aquaculture practices and growth strategies.
JAA also led the design and implementation of a study to capture key lessons about Uganda’s use of self-selecting agricultural processors and service providers (“target firms”) as primary points of entry for agriculture sector interventions. The JAA team described the structural arrangements between target firms and smallholder farmers, and their advantages and disadvantages with regard to enabling flows of information and benefits. Focusing on the coffee, maize, and agro-inputs value chains, the study was largely informed by analysis of qualitative and case information collected from stakeholders through interviews with key informants and focus group discussions. After distilling these data into profiles of the various relationship structures and lessons-learned about how USAID’s and other development partners’ interventions interacted with these structures, the JAA team facilitated a round table with project stakeholders and USAID staff to discuss, validate, and reflect on the study’s findings.
LEAD was one of the first programs to orient itself entirely around a CLA (Collaborating, Learning, Adapting), pioneering CLA planning, information sharing, feedback and implementation mechanisms.