The EU-funded Project “ODAK – Enbekshi-Kazakh Alliance for sustainable economic and human development” held its final conference at the Enbekshi-Kazakh District Akimat on October 22nd. The aim of the conference was to spread the Project’s results and good practices.
The conference served as well the purpose to share the Project’s Exit Strategy and Plan, notably in regards to the territorial alliance – a multi-stakeholder partnership made of public and private local actors (farmers, producers, governmental authorities, civil society organizations, educational institutions and research centers) built within the Project, and pivoting around the non-for-profit “ODAK Association” (formally registered in September 2019). The ODAK Association and the enlarged stakeholders’ alliance work in close partnership with the local Akimat to realise concerted actions for boosting sustainable and inclusive development of the Enbekshi-Kazakh District.
Based on the comprehensive analysis of four prioritized value chains (apples, vegetables, milk and soy/maize) and the Strategic Guidelines for the sustainable, long-term development of these value chains developed within the Project, the Project partners and participants took some concrete actions to provide quick responses to the target farmers’ and small entrepreneurs’ demands.
The Project’s main achievements include: the opening of one front desk (One-Stop-Shop) in Shelek, the launch of one Call of proposals to award and finance 10 innovative grassroots business and modernization projects, the delivery of training and technical assistance to farmers for conversion to organic agriculture, the implementation of new lines of businesses and initiatives in the field of organic farming and processing, the delivery of assistance on raw material procurement, marketing and branding of the value chains’ products, and on the modernization of the farmers’ skills and techniques, via the partnership with the Kazakh National Agrarian University and other research centers.
Moreover, with a view to boost employability and business start-ups, the Project has worked in close partnership with the District Chamber of Entrepreneurs and Employment Centre for organizing entrepreneurship and professional trainings and assistance services, targeting in particular women, youth, and disadvantaged people.
The ODAK Project was officially launched in Esik in May 2017 and is implemented by a consortium of European and Kazakh partners: FORMAPER – Agency of Milan Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Handicraft and Agriculture (Italy, lead partner), Enbekshi-Kazakh District Akimat, International Ecological Association “Women of the Orient” (IEAWO), Farmers of Kazakhstan Foundation, KIP International School (Rome, Italy) and ILS LEDA.