• Gates Criticised for Spending Less on Africa

    According to John Vidal, African non-governmental organisations received just four percent of Bill Gates’ money for agriculture work, with 75 percent for United States organisations.

    Vidal says that most of the US$3 billion that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has given to benefit hungry people in the world’s poorest countries has been spent in the United States, Britain and other rich countries, with only around 10 percent spent in Africa.

    He says analysis of grants made by the foundation shows that nearly half the money awarded over the past decade went to global agriculture research networks, as well as organisations including the World Bank and UN agencies, and groups that work in Africa to promote hi-tech farming.

    To read the article titled, “Gates foundation spends bulk of agriculture grants in rich countries,” click here.

    The Guardian
  • Mining, Biofuels, Require Efficient Farms

    Mining and biofuels are competing with agriculture for land in South Africa, putting pressure on farmers to become more efficient, particularly through the use of technology.

    Head of agribusiness at Standard Bank, Nico Groenewald, notes that as a result, South Africa’s commercial farmers are consolidating into fewer and larger operations to achieve economies of scale and remain profitable.

    Groenewald states that the rising use of biofuels adds to the challenges and has to be balanced with food security, adding that biofuels will create demand for maize and sorghum that did not exist before.

    To read the article titled, “Mining and biofuels ‘drive the need for more efficient farms’,” click here.

  • Lack of Funding Cripples ARC

    The Agricultural Research Council (ARC), which received a grant of R866-million in 2013/14, 16 percent more than the previous year, was established in 1990 to be the country’s primary agricultural scientific research institution, but has suffered from years of neglect and underfunding.

    In its annual report, the ARC paints a picture of an organisation suffering from chronic underfunding and trying to do the best with the resources available.

    Science and agricultural research is considered a fundamental part of boosting the sector’s international competitiveness and ensuring food security - not just for commercial farmers, but for small-scale rural farmers.

    To read the article titled, “Agriculture research suffers as little funding cuts resources,” click here.

    Mail and Guardian
  • Govt Urged to Give Land to ‘Able People’

    The African Farmers' Association of SA (AFASA) says that government must ensure land is allocated to individuals who have the capacity to use it.
    AFASA president, Mzamo Mlengana, points out that, "We are saying to the minister (of Rural Development and Land Reform Gugile Nkwinti), we need to have criteria for the farmers' selection."
    Mlengana argues that, "When you select a farmer who is not a farmer, it works to the negative of what we are doing. It opens us and government to criticism. Once again, perception will be 'look at the black farmers who have been given land, it's not working'."
    To read the article titled, “Give land to able people: Farmers,” click here.

    Sowetan Live
  • NGOs Our Only Hope - Villagers

    According to Moses Matenga, one thing Chivi villagers in Zimbabwe’s Masvingo province would want to quickly forget is the ravaging drought that ate away their livestock in 2012.

    In his article titled ‘NGOs our only hope – villagers’, Matenga states that from the hunger of 2008 that forced them to compete for chakata (a wild fruit) with donkeys to the menacing dry spell of 2012-13, the villagers and their counterparts from the southern region do not want, never again, to see their livestock dying from hunger.

    He argues that most of the southern parts of Zimbabwe lie in regions which are too dry for successful crop production without irrigation. However, he adds that communal farmers have no other choice but to grow crops in these areas even without access to irrigation.

    To read the article titled, “NGOs our only hope – villagers,” click here.

    News Day
  • Small-Scale Farmers Risk Losing Farms

    Scores of small scale farmers in Jozini, northern KwaZulu-Natal, are at risk of losing their farms.

    According to the South African Broadcasting Corporation’s Ayanda Mhlongo, more than 20 farmers have already lost their farms due to alleged corruption and mismanagement by Mjindi - a government appointed management entity.

    Mhlongo says the farmers claim to have lease agreements on the land, adding that other farmers also allege government promised them farming implements, withheld by Mjindi, resulting in dying crops.

    To read the article titled, “Small scale farmers risk losing farms in KZN,” click here.

    SABC News
  • Africa Urged to Modernise Farming

    At the 23rd African Union (AU) Summit, the chairperson of the AU, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, encouraged the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) Heads of State and Government Orientation Committee (HSGOC) to modernise farming as a means of attracting young women and men into the agricultural sector.

    Since its evolution from Organisation for African Unity to AU in 2000, the organisation has been battling with the impact of global financial crises threatening its vision of integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa.

    Agriculture remains a major source of food security and economic growth in Africa, according to African Economic Outlook 2014, which describes the sector is the main exports trade commodity in Africa valued at US$57 billion.

    To read the article titled, “Modernising agriculture to address youth unemployment in Africa,” click here.

    SABC News
  • NGO Merger Will Benefit Africa

    Merged non-governmental organisations (NGOs) say they need to pool resources if they are to make a significant difference.

    The merger of Irish NGOs, Gorta, and Self Help Africa has created one of the largest nonprofit agricultural organisations in Ireland and Britain.

    Gorta was set up in 1965 as an Irish response to a United Nations hunger campaign; Self Help Africa had its genesis in the Ethiopian famine of 1984 and together they will implement programmes in Ethiopia, Zambia, Malawi, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Ghana, Togo, Benin and Burkina Faso.

    To read the article titled, “Development sector ‘shake-up’ will benefit Africa,” click here.  

    Irish Times
  • Govt Pledges Farms to Community, Co-ops

    North West Premier, Supra Mahumapelo’s pledge to allocate all state-owned farms in the province to community and youth cooperatives has been greeted favourably, but details on how this will be implemented are sketchy.

    In his state of the province address, Mahumapelo stated: “Government will provide seeds and implements, and ensure that state hospitals procure all their required supplies from these cooperatives.”

    His spokesperson, Sam Mokaila, says that all young people and women who are organised under properly registered cooperatives will benefit from this initiative.

    To read the article titled, “North West Premier pledges state-owned farms to community, youth cooperatives,” click here.

    Times Live
  • Joint Aid Management: Personal Assistant - CEO

    Joint Aid Management (JAM)
    Please note: this opportunity closing date has passed and may not be available any more.
    Opportunity closing date: 
    Thursday, May 29, 2014
    Opportunity type: 
    Joint Aid Management (JAM) is a South African founded humanitarian nonprofit organisation that works to empower Africans to create better lives for themselves.

    JAM seeks to appoint a Personal Assistant to the CEO, based in South Africa.

    The Assistant to the CEO and co-founder is responsible to the CEO for the performance of highly technical, responsible, and confidential executive office functions without recourse to a supervisor.  Responsible to the CEO for executing with minimal direction the management of the CEO’s Office.
    • Serve as  assistant to the CEO;
    • Represent the CEO and Co-founder of the Organisation in a professional and congenial manner in person, in telephone conversations, and in written correspondence and inter-staff communications;
    • Being able to lead discussions and take informed decisions in support of strategic objectives of the organisation
    • Consolidate reports for the CEO, and management;
    • Manage the handling of the logistics for the CEO;
    • Develop a quick and sound understanding of JAM and all JAM’s various activities;
    • Quickly assess each business/NGO contact and their environment and most effective ways of working/partnering;
    • Establish rapport with key people in the organization and consultants to JAM;
    • Understand key areas needing CEO’s attention and various programmes to meet these needs;
    • Telephone coverage, mail processing, ordering supplies, preparing and implementing bank deposits;
    • Draft letters and other correspondence for the CEO, including letters of gratitude, follow-up, agreement and letters of appreciation;
    • Discreet handling of confidential information;
    • Proofread and edit documentation;
    • Scan material for projects and publications;
    • Initiate effective and relevant inputs for high-end donors;
    • Participate in brainstorming sessions for various projects;
    • Assist with development and preparation of budgets for specific projects within the organization;
    • Update contacts and articles in the database, using database to export information, merge letters, make contact lists, produce labels, and prepare group emails;
    • Assist with filing and organization of information;
    • Maintain the office calendar, including the schedule for the CEO;
    • Maintain the CEO’s CV, training and technical assistance schedules, and notebooks;
    • Assist with travel arrangements for the CEO and Co-founder and maintain travel records;
    • Take notes and/or minutes at various meetings;
    • Prepare expense reports and reimbursement forms for the CEO and Co-founder;
    • Assist with general office administrative tasks as needed;
    • Assist with meeting planning as needed;
    • Attend and represent the CEO and/or Co-founder at seminars and conferences when they are travelling;
    • Assist with tasks related to marketing, registrations, development of the agendas and resource materials for meetings;
    • Assist with various personal tasks for the CEO and Co-founder. 
    • Bachelor’s degree and/or equivalent work experience;
    • Languages:  English is essential;
      • Portuguese will be an added advantage
      • Any of the other 11 languages is an advantage
    • Excellent interpersonal skills;
    • Excellent editing and proofreading skills;
    • Strong verbal and written communication skills;
    • Attention to accuracy and detail in all aspects of responsibilities;
    • Proficient computer skills, particularly with Microsoft Office, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint;
    • Experience scanning photographs and slides preferred;
    • Experience in working with a database;
    • Experience performing research utilizing the Internet;
    • Excellent organizational skills and confidentiality;
    • Knowledge of basic filing and organizational protocols;
    • The ability to follow directions, sometimes from multiple sources, and determine priorities;
    • Flexibility and a willingness to perform other reasonable duties as requested, including willingness and availability beyond office work hours.
    Salary: R18 000 per month.

    To apply, submit a CV and motivational letter to

    Please quote the source of this advertisement in your application - NGO Pulse Portal.

    Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted for interviews.

    For more about Joint Aid Management, refer to

    For other vacancies in the NGO sector, refer to


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