Democratic Republic of the Congo: Improving COPACO’s training system (1,600,000 Producers)

Created in 1998, the Confédération Paysanne du Congo (COPACO-PRP) is a professional organisation comprising 452 local entities: farmers’ associations, production cooperatives, farmers’ groups, cooperative unions, farmers’ federations and farmers’ production and service organisations. COPACO-PRP is a member of the Plateforme Régionale des Organisations Paysannes d’Afrique Centrale (PROPAC) and therefore of PAFO. It has a national office in Kinshasa, 18 provincial coordinators, 130 local grassroots units and 17 extension workers. COPACO represents some 1,600,000 producers (57% men and 43% women) who grow fruit and vegetables, as well as other crops such as maize and manioc.

In May 2023, COLEAD, via its FFM+ programme, launched a diagnostic investigation of COPACO’s training system. The mission was developed in three stages: (i) a detailed description of the training system (themes, target audiences, frequency of training, monitoring and evaluation mechanisms, number of trainers and participants targeted); (ii) identification of the training needs of COPACO supervisors and members; and (iii) the design of a strategic action plan to meet the needs identified and adapted to the resources available.

This diagnostic involved a detailed review of the confederation’s internal documents and surveys of all the stakeholders: members of the farmers’ academy, professional trainers, management, farmers, local organisations and the provincial coordinator.

Following the diagnostic, a plan was drawn up to strengthen and improve COMACO’s training system for 2023 and 2024. This plan includes the following priorities for action:

  • Developing the teaching skills of trainers, using a cascade approach to maximise the impact of training.
  • Optimising the training system by methodically identifying needs and strengthening evaluation mechanisms.
  • Building the capacity of local organisations in the fields of small-scale production and processing of agricultural products.
  • Promoting access to relevant sources of information, in particular the resources made available by COLEAD, to integrate them effectively into COPACO’s training system.

This activity is supported by the Fit For Market SPS programme implemented by COLEAD as part of the development cooperation between the Organisation of African, Caribbean, and Pacific States (OACPS) and the European Union.

This publication receives financial support from the European Union and the OACPS. The content of this publication is the sole responsibility of COLEAD and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union or the OACPS.

© Confederation Paysanne Du Congo “Copaco-Prp”