FAO’s Investment Centre has developed a free multilingual toolkit with training courses, manuals and custom developed software aimed to assist countries in designing successful projects for rural development. Launched in the 1990s in Latin America, RuralInvest has now become established in the Caribbean, Africa and the Middle East, with further uptake expected from Eastern Europe and Central Asia before the end of the year.
The first RuralInvest training to be given in the Turkish language took place in December 2010, and a number of staff of Turkey’s Ministry of Environment and Forestry (MOEF) were successfully trained in working with applicant groups and communities to conceive and implement their own investment projects related to rural development. This training was an important step forward for initiating further training events in June and July 2011 which took place again in Turkey (27 June – 5 July), Jamaica (6-10 June) and in French in Morocco (21 June – 1st July). The sessions have been co-funded by FAO’s Investment Centre and recipient governments.
After receiving training as certified RuralInvest facilitators, local technical staff are able to support a wide range of local applicants to independently undertake rural investment projects of importance to them and their communities. The four RuralInvest modules help potential applicants to reach consensus on priorities and potentials, identify appropriate investments which respond to these needs, and to prepare ‘bankable’ proposals which can then be considered for funding by local investment funds and rural development agencies. Finally, Ruralinvest also provides support for financing agencies to monitor and evaluate financed projects.
Further detail on RuralInvest can be found on the Investment Centre website at: http://www.fao.org/investment/ourrole/ruralinvest/en/