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Drivers of Change Award - another Insight winner
Tuesday, November 03, 2009

The Drivers of Change Awards for 2009 were announced at the end of October 2009.  The winning programme was the ComMark Eastern Cape Red Meat Programme.  Xolile Ngetu manages the programme and has lived and breathed the programme for the last five years, rightfully earning the award.

Insight Strategies can bask in some of the reflected glory.  For a short time Insight project managed the programme, but more importantly, developed some of the educations content for the programme.  The main aim is to empower rural beef farmers with the ability to make decisions whether or not to sell their cattle at auction.  Before this intervention, the farmers were obliged to sell either within their communities or to traders that arrived in the communities offering to buy the cattle.  The programme opened up new economies to these farmers by giving them access to the auction network, providing them with a third alternative of marketing their stock.

The challenge, however, was educating the farmers on the auction system.  A largely illiterate group, with little schooling beyond the basics.  A lack of formal teaching or training environments, and a lack of trained trainers or educators to spread the word.  This was the brief presented to Insight Strategies – were we up to the challenge?

The solution? A game using no letters, words or numbers, other than money showing how cattle are graded and what buyers at the auction are looking for.  A process where teams of farmers raise and auction their own virtual herd of cattle, being exposed to the operations, vagaries and surprises of the auction lot.

So congratulations Xolile!  Thanks for the opportunity of working with another wining programme.