The AMEA Toolbox
In order to scale up and advance progress on the development of professional farmer organizations – i.e. that members are capacitated to manage their organizations as a business – the sector needs systemic change. This change starts by all stakeholders agreeing on and speaking a common language (see IWA 29). Then, based on the common language, capacity developers use assessment tools with the farmer organizations they work with to measure levels of professionalism and to identify gaps for improvement. Trainings and coaching sessions are then tailored to respond to the identified gaps and executed by highly qualified trainers and coaches, who are experienced in understanding the tools and curricula in the AMEA toolbox.
The AMEA Toolbox
Agribusiness Leadership Program (ALP), Foundations of Cooperative Management: IFC
Enhancing Development through Cooperatives (EDC) training approach: CTA
Agribusiness Coaching (ABC), Making Value Chains Work: iCRA
Sell More for More: ACDI/VOCA
Membership/Marketing/Money/Management (M4): ACDI/VOCA
SCOPE Basic and SCOPE Pro: SCOPEinsight
AMEA members have access to a database of trainers and coaches who have experience in
delivering these curricula and tools to farmer organisations with references from other AMEA members.
AMEA has developed a detailed Toolbox Guide to help members choose the right materials for their projects. This includes a breakdown of each material's purpose, type of capacity development, past use and more!
Using the AMEA toolbox complements your daily work and helps you improve it by:
1. Accelerating the development of the farmer organizations you work with
Despite best intentions, many agribusiness initiatives fail to deliver as planned. A key constraint is the lack of progress is in developing farmer organizations that can deliver for markets that demand consistent quantity and quality. The AMEA toolbox cannot guarantee success but it does provide you with the best available resources to help overcome that challenge. As a valued AMEA member you have access to:
AMEA peer reviewed and approved assessment tools which enable you to benchmark the farmer organizations you work with against other projects, sectors and countries.
AMEA peer reviewed and approved curricula, which enable farmer organizations to meet the IWA 29: Professional Farmer Organizations – Guidelines.
Recommended trainers and coaches, who are familiar with the AMEA toolbox materials.
2. Increasing your competitive edge
AMEA provides a pre-competitive space for organizations to collaborate. This means AMEA uses approaches to foster co-operation within a highly competitive environment. It is this co-operation which also gives members a competitive edge. With the AMEA toolbox, this competitive edge is observed through:
The ability to differentiate your organization from non-AMEA members through the use of accredited, proven tools within new project designs.
The ability to focus your resources on delivering the assessment, training and coaching rather than developing the tools and curricula.
Review of materials
Assessment and training materials are thoroughly (peer) reviewed by experts of the Toolbox Working Group, following the process and criteria determined by the Working Group and approved by the Board.
AMEA members have access to these materials through AMEA, in accordance with their membership level and type and specified intellectual property agreements. Members are provided with a direct contact to understand how to access and use the approved materials, as well as master trainers' and coaches' availability.
Why are assessments and training important?
AMEA envisions a vibrant market ecosystem where farmer organizations are professional partners in supply chains. High-quality assessment methods and training materials that are aligned with a recognised set of guidelines for professional farmer organizations, can help identify the right smallholder farmer partners. This gives market actors and financial institutions the confidence to partner with farmer organizations who meet commonly accepted guidelines of professionalism and in turn, gives farmer organizations better access to market opportunities. Assessments also identify where training and coaching is needed for farmer organizations - a crucial first step towards professionalization.
AMEA Trainers and Coaches
To complement the AMEA toolkit, AMEA has a database of qualified trainers and coaches, who can deliver high-quality training and coaching tailored to farmer organizations’ needs and in accordance to the core capacities of the IWA global guidelines. These trainers and coaches are experienced in using the AMEA-approved assessment tools and training programs and come recommended by other members.
Trainers and coaches benefit by finding a higher number of assignments, by improving on the delivery of high-quality support to FOs and by being recognized for their expertise and performance.
Farmer organizations participating in trainings carried out by AMEA trainers and coaches have the guarantee that those trainers and coaches qualify to the AMEA approval criteria.
Why is a database of trainers and coaches important?
Many organizations experience challenges in finding adequate trainers for their projects or spend time and resources training them in specific curricula or assessment methods.
This shared database helps AMEA members avoid time-consuming and inefficient approaches to access trainers and coaches for their projects. Trainers and coaches come recommended by other AMEA members, so organisations are assured that these trainers and coaches can deliver on the AMEA toolkit assessments and trainings.
How are trainers and coaches added to the database?
Trainers and coaches can be added to the trainer database in two different ways. Firstly, through AMEA member-led certification programs, such as "training of trainers". Alternatively, trainers and coaches can be referred by an AMEA member and invited to join the database of trainers and coaches. Trainers and coaches who are invited to the database have experience in delivering one or more of the AMEA toolkit materials.
Where can I find the AMEA trainers and coaches database?
AMEA members have access to recommended trainers and coaches through a private LinkedIn group. The Working Group for Trainers and Coaches also meets (online) on a regular basis to discuss issues around trainers and coaches.