Municipalities procuring from smallholder farmers awarded at Mali’s National Learning Event


In January 2015, PG-HGSF’s National Learning Event in Mali brought together over 75 participants. These participants included representatives from the Ministry of Education, National Centre for School Canteens (CNCS), and the Ministry of Finance as well as international partners such as the Partnership for Childhood Development, the World Food Program, Catholic Relief Services and the Millennium Village Project.

During the Mali National Learning Event, participants discussed various initiatives to strengthen the sustainability efforts of school feeding through sharing their challenges and good practices related to funding, involving communities and working with CNCS. 

The two-day event was filled with presentations from the SNV PG-HGSF teams from Mali and Ghana and other key organisations, videos, panels and roundtable discussions around the three main discussion topics: access to funds for school feeding, community contributions to school canteens and the involvement of smallholder farmers in the supply to those canteens.

In addition to the presentations and experiences shared during the event, two municipalities, known as communes in Mali, were recognised with PG-HGSF Mali’s inaugural “best commune” prize. The prize recognises communes that participate actively in school feeding activities and supply their schools with the greatest percentage of products from local farmers. This year’s winners were the communes of Siadougou, located in Yangasso, and Fallou, located in Kolokani. The prize money will enable each commune to make a modest improvement to their school canteens through a product or service such as an improved cook stove or kitchen tools. 

The Mali National Learning Event was the first annual opportunity of its kind for school feeding actors to connect and share their collective issues, successes and concerns. SNV and partners expressed hope that connections fostered during the event will yield greater collaboration between all actors involved in school feeding in Mali.




Eligibility criteria

  • The solution must be economically viable either in the form of a social or for-profit business
  • The solution must have a positive impact on the climate, environment and community
  • SMEs must be located in the Ashanti or Western Regions or have operations in the regions (for instance as a source of input or with an operational office). SMEs must have been operating in the Ashanti or Western regions for at least a year
  • The solution must be in the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency and/or Agriculture sectors
  • The solution must have been developed and ready to go to market (at least a working prototype or demo) or already on the market with existing customers
  • The lead entrepreneur must be between 18-35 years. Women entrepreneurs can be older than 35 but no older than 40 years
  • Priority will be given to businesses led by women-led and/or returning migrants


Financial requirements

  • The GrEEn Challenge Fund will contribute up to €25,000 of the funds needed for the proposed initiative for eight (8) SMEs
  • The SMEs will co-invest on a 20:80 basis with cash and in-kind contributions
  • The SMEs are required to have at least 10% equity as their co-investment. Any in-kind contribution must be specific and directly related to the project
  • The cash contribution can be recently procured direct capital expenditure (equipment, physical assets etc) or project operational expenses


Targeted regions

  • Ashanti and
  • Western regions


Application process

The application process is as follows:

  1. Apply for the GrEEn Innovation Challenge through its online application portal here.
  2. Complete the online application by sharing a link to a 30 seconds (max) video/demo of the business/solutions to before submitting your online application. Video can be uploaded to an accessible cloud drive or on YouTube



Sunday, 25 July 2021 at 23:59 GMT.