Feed the Future
This project is part of the U.S. Government's global hunger and food security initiative.

Key takeaways on integrating women into value chains from Loftin and Ryan of MEDA

Authored by

On May 16, 2013, Helen Loftin and Ariane Ryan of MEDA presented on "Integrating Women into Value Chains: Lessons From Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Ghana." In this video, Loftin and Ryan share main insights from MEDA's experiences in empowering women through integration into market systems. They discuss the growing body of research that shows linkages of competitiveness of a country and gender gap, the MEDA sales-agent model, and cultural and political sensitivities in engaging women into markets.

Helen Loftin

Helen Loftin is the Director of Women’s Economic Development (WED) with Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA). She leads a portfolio of projects that include value chain, food security, SME development, and livelihoods recovery projects that target women clients and boost their participation in vibrant market systems. She promotes WED programs, highlighting the merits of private sector integration as an effective development approach for women. Loftin has developed and launched several women’s economic development projects in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti, Libya, and Ghana- currently reaching over 100,000 women.

Ariane Ryan

Ariane Ryan is the Project Manager/Consultant for the Women’s Economic Development with Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA). In this position, she has managed projects which seek to promote women’s active participation in the economy in countries including Pakistan, Libya, and Haiti. She works closely with field teams to implement and monitor market-based interventions which foster the integration of women in their local economies.