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Waterloo, ON, December 19, 2018 – Today, on behalf of the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of International Development, the Honourable Bardish Chagger announced funding for a new five-year project with MEDA that will improve the economic resilience of women and youth farmers in Senegal.


The project, valued at close to $18 million, will encourage farmers in the Sedhiou and Tambacounda regions of Senegal to adopt innovative technologies and best practices to ensure that their agricultural and irrigation practices are climate friendly. This will directly benefit 15,000 women and youth and improve the economic resilience of over 150,000 people in the region.

“Canada is a global leader on gender equality and is proud of its long-standing partnership with MEDA and its work to provide innovative business solutions to address poverty,” said Minister Chagger, on behalf of Minister Bibeau. “Today’s announcement will help women and youth in Senegal reach their full potential and support their communities through environmentally responsible business practices and technologies.”

Currently, MEDA has twelve active projects with Global Affairs Canada (partner since 1978), in economic development ranging from empowering women and youth, growing small businesses to supporting small scale farmers -- in countries as diverse as Nicaragua, Tanzania, Ghana, Jordan, Nigeria, Ethiopia and Myanmar.

“We are grateful to Global Affairs Canada for their continued commitment and partnership with MEDA. The work we do, particularly with women and youth and the pursuit of environmentally sustainable business practices in developing regions globally, are key in supporting the countries and local partners we work with concretely to progress towards the attainment of the SDGs,” says Dr. Dorothy Nyambi, MEDA’s incoming president and CEO. “This latest funding is an investment in the people of Senegal which will introduce much needed support for farmers and we are eager to get started.”

The funding was announced at an open house where attendees bid fond farewell and honoured the success of Allan Sauder, MEDA’s president and CEO since 2002 who retired this week, and warmly welcomed incoming president and CEO Dr. Dorothy Nyambi.

Attended by local supporters and members of the Region of Waterloo’s economic development and business community, the event showcased MEDA’s work around the world and its new green sustainable office space in Waterloo, designed to support the organization’s ongoing global work to provide business solutions to poverty. Region of Waterloo Chair Karen Redman and Waterloo Mayor Dave Jaworsky also brought greetings at the event.

Founded in 1953 by a group of Mennonite business professionals, and with support from private and institutional donors, MEDA is a recognized global leader and innovator in the development and delivery of economic development programs in developing regions around the world. MEDA’s provides support across a range of economic development areas of expertise including financial services, improved technology, business training, better access to markets and equity investment.

About MEDA

Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA) is an international economic development organization whose mission is to create business solutions to alleviate poverty. We work with 400 partners in 62 countries to help 910,000 clients unleash their potential to earn a livelihood, provide for their families and enrich their communities. Donations to MEDA are multiplied in impact seven times on average. MEDA has offices in Waterloo and Ottawa, ON, Washington, DC and Lancaster, PA, and internationally.


For further information contact:

Tammy Bender
Sr. Director, Marketing & Communications