Over the past years, a social service organization known as Sky Fox Limited has been supporting fish and crop farming in several African countries.
In 2015, the company started operations in Sierra Leone and supported by USAID, Sky Fox partnered with N’jala University to undertake fish and crop farming projects in N’jala Mokonde, Makali, Mile 91 and several other regions across Sierra Leone.
The project aims to target over 15,000 farmers in Sierra Leone in its first phase.
The Ambassador used the opportunity to debrief farmers and university staff on their current activities with regards to farming activities especially on fish farming.
She said the U.S has had a long relationship with N’jala University, spanning over a decade and presented a token to the university.
Sky Fox is providing logistics to the farmers of whom 5,000 are targeted for fish farming and 10,000 crop farmers.
Explaining to farmers and the delegates on the tour, the Dean of Natural Resources Management at N’jala University, Dr. Philip Mornya highlighted challenges they are facing, especially with regards generating power.
Fatmata Tarawallie, a fish farmer, expressed delight over their involvement into the project, stating further that they will replicate what they have seen and learnt to their respective farms.
Another farmer, Alusine Conteh said when they first got in contact with SkyFox, they did not have the money to buy fingerlings and feeds but they decided to get into an agreement in which they will share revenue at the end of the harvest period.
"We were dealing with Tilapia fish, but SkyFox has introduced us to Catfish, and I can tell you that people like catfish and it is very lucrative; we like it" said Tarawallie.
Dr. Julius Olufemi Oladape is the Head of Aquaculture and Fisheries Management at N’jala University, he called on government and individuals to help with a borehole and a 50 KV Generator which could provide about 1.5 tons of feed per day.
He maintained that they are also engaging their students in the process whiles opening doors for community people to also get involved.
Ayodeji Fagoroye is the Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Operations and IT for Sky Fox Ltd.
He said raising of the fish is done together with supervision from their various supervisors at their respective areas.
"After the harvest period, if farmers are not willing or able to take fish to the market, Sky fox will buy from them and start the other phase of production." said Fagoroye.
Being a business agreement, Sky Fox and the farmers had a 70% and 30% revenue share of which the former gets the highest after harvest; usually ranging from 4-5 months.
As the project also focuses on crop farming, irrigation tubes are installed in various farms especially bigger ones like 1-2 acres to provide organic manure for crops.