Project profile — Support for Women’s Entrepreneurship Within the Rice Sector


CECI - Centre for International Studies and Cooperation (CA-CRA_ACR-0010011136)
2017-02-23 - 2023-10-31
Global Affairs Canada
WGM Africa

Country / region 

• Benin (100.00%)


• Secondary Education: Vocational training (11330) (30.00%)
• Agriculture: Agricultural education/training (31181) (20.00%)
• Industry: Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development (32130) (50.00%)

Policy marker 

• Gender equality (principal objective)
• Environmental sustainability (cross-cutting) (significant objective)
• Participatory development and good governance (significant objective)
• Trade development (significant objective)
• Biodiversity (not targeted)
• Climate change mitigation (not targeted)
• Climate Change Adaptation (not targeted)
• Urban issues (not targeted)
• Desertification (not targeted)
• Children's issues (not targeted)
• Youth Issues (not targeted)
• Indigenous Issues (not targeted)
• Disability (not targeted)
• ICT as a tool for development (not targeted)
• Nutrition (significant objective)


This project aims at improving women parboilers’ living conditions in the southern part of Benin in the Department of Collines through assisting professional rice steaming organizations. Parboiled rice is a method of husking rice, thus enabling the retention of 80% of its nutritional value, increasing its resistance to breakage and allowing for better storage conditions. The project is directly benefitting over 1 500 women parboilers and indirectly contributing to the economic well-being of over 21 000 members of their local community. The project’s activities include: (1) developing suitable and accessible funding for the women parboilers; (2) improving access to the rice market, in particular, through the development of appropriate infrastructures (for instance: rice steaming processing centres); (3) strengthening steamer unions' capacity in good governance and business administration; (4) enhancing women parboilers' access to professional expertise and technological innovation in the area of rice steaming; and (5) providing support aimed at professionally structuring agricultural holdings and promoting agricultural entrepreneurship by professional local organizations.

Expected results 

The expected outcomes of this project include: (1) the steady improvement of the strategic positioning of the women parboilers Regional Union located in Glazoué, of the women parboilers National Union and the rice farmers collaborative council of Benin taking into consideration the cross-cutting themes of gender equality, governance and environmental sustainability; and (2) the continuous improvement of the profitability and the competitiveness of these women parboilers businesses (1500) through their associations (30) operating six rice steaming processing centres and one central wrapping centre.

Results achieved 

Results achieved as of the end of the project (October 2023) include: (1) improved strategic positioning of parboilers associations and increased influence to improve the functioning of national consultation frameworks within the rice value chain; (2) increased professionalization of partners through modern governance and management practices; (3) increased the number of seats reserved for and occupied by women producers and parboilers, ensuring representativeness within the mixed structures of decision-making bodies; (4) improved business profitability through useful advisory and economic services for members; (5) improved the competitiveness of parboiled rice and non-parboiled rice from the processing and distribution centers; and (6) improved the reading, writing, basic accounting, and French language skills of the 554 women parboilers who are members of Regional women rice parboilers’ union through functional literacy campaigns.

Budget and spending 

Original budget $0
Planned disbursement $0
Transaction Date Type Value
30-05-2023 Disbursement $250,000
18-03-2024 Disbursement $250,000
Country percentages by sector
Type of finance Aid grant excluding debt reorganisation
Collaboration type Bilateral
Type of aid Project-type interventions
Date modified: