WHO WE ARE
The Zambian Women in Agricultural Research and Development (ZaWARD) is a network of Women with a common goal of making critical advances and innovations in Agricultural Research and Development. Its membership is open to all women engaged in agricultural research and development and students of agricultural sciences or pursuing agricultural related courses, as well as organizations that promote and support agriculture. ZaWARD also has in its membership past and current fellows, mentors and mentees of the Africa Wide network; African Women in Agricultural Research and Development (AWARD). The Zambian chapter of AWARD launched in 2016 was created to, inter alia, provide a platform for AWARD fellows, mentors and mentees to continue sharing their experiences and transfer their knowledge obtained from their association with AWARD to others. ZaWARD uses the AWARD model of promoting career development through increased visibility, strengthening research skills, science and leadership skills training among women scientists and practitioners working in the agricultural sector in Zambia.
ZaWARD acknowledges the recognition of the Agricultural Sector by The Zambian Government as one of the sectors that greatly contributes to the economy and provides employment to about 2/3 of the labour force. As such, ZaWARD’s objectives are in line with the government policy to expand and diversify the sector as well as ensure that it becomes more inclusive to women. ZaWARD's Principle Objectives include; to Promote Gender Responsive Research by not only acknowledging the existence of the gender gap in agriculture but also influencing the implementation of gender responsive agricultural policies and programs to enable more inclusive agriculture and food systems, contribute to the capacity development of members to enable them to deliver effective solutions for small holder farmers and to promote exchange of innovative technologies and human resources for sustainable development of the agricultural sector
ZaWARD's activities among others include;· Participation in lobby and advocacy activities for increased public funding to Research and Development, girls and women’s participation in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) and gender mainstreaming in agricultural policy development and implementation ,support its members in conducting various applicable research in the Agricultural Sector, facilitation of joint publications amongst women in the Agricultural Sector, providing mentorship to girls and women at all levels of education, conducting training for members in areas relevant to their career development, sourcing for and linking members to various career enhancement opportunities in the agricultural sector such as funding, scholarships, job openings and internships as well as holding events that enable networking.
ZaWARD partners with various organizations including the Indaba for Agricultural Policy and Research Institute (IAPRI) which is presently hosting it at its secretariat in Lusaka, the Zambia Agricultural Research Institutes (ZARI) under Ministry of Agriculture, the University of Zambia (UNZA) and the National Science and Technology Council (NSTC).