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«REPORT BOAT-Natural Resources College, Malawi Workshop MANAGING SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT Improving agricultural management by training and extension ...»

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Most participants understood the subjects presented, although a number of specific subjects were identified as not fully understood by some participants.

Nearly all participants stated that they would recommend the workshop to others although some commented that there should be more focus on Malawi local issues and more time for practicals.

Conclusion This first joint venture between BOAT and NRC Malawi has been successful and the NRC has already indicated informally that it would like to hold similar events in the future.

The NRC is an excellent training facility located in a country with which BOAT already has links, and which is among the 12 poorest countries in the world.

NRC is largely autonomous which gives it flexibility and considerable freedom from bureaucracy in decision making.

The college has plans to develop into a regional training hub and to increase its ad hoc courses but has indicated that it would appreciate assistance to achieve this.

NRC senior management has enjoyed a good working relationship with BOAT particularly through BOAT Associate Prof John Wibberley, as well as the BOAT/Bicton courses attended by Kingsley Mikwamba and two other staff in 2008/09. As a result, NRC senior staff consider themselves to be old friends of BOAT and have indicated that they would like to strengthen and formalize the relationship.

6 Appendix 1 Q.1 Key Learning/Reminders What have you learned/been reminded of in this workshop? (Note three key aspects, ideas, concepts or practices). The following responses were received:First answers on Sustainable intensification and biodiversity conservation

• Agriculture intensification programmes

• Sustainable agricultural practices

• On farmers and governance

• Strategic and business planning

• Sustainable intensified management

• The concept of sustainable management

• The need to learn from farmers’ indigenous knowledge

• Land grabbing and the need for strong civil society organisations

• The power of working with farmer groups

• Tree planting

• Intensify management of natural resources

• Strategic Planning

• Integral management as a sustainable approach to development

• Sustaining farmer groups

• Leadership and teamwork

• Conservation farming

• Participatory strategic management

• Proper extension concepts when dealing with farmer groups

• Sustainable agricultural intensification

• Agronomic and soil management

• Soil management and Conservation Farming

• Participatory approaches

• Shifting of emphasis in extension

• Benefits of farmer-controlled groups

• Sustainable intensification

• Challenges facing Africa in managing agriculture

• Farmer groups are the best strategy for improved livelihoods

• Good points and practices on sustainable intensification

• How to work with communities, especially farmers, enabling participation Second answers on Q.1.: The Log-frame

• Conservation Agriculture

• Business management and strategic planning

• Report writing ingredients

• Agronomic and soil management practices for food security

• Managing Farm Groups

• The vast potential and resources of Africa

• Sensitising local people to realities

• Fuel-efficient stoves 7

• Cultivate land in our heads before doing the actual thing

• Farmer collaboration

• Management issues facing other participants

• Key farmer trainers concept

• Training needs assessment

• Livestock management and integration into sustainable farming

• How smallholder farmers can manage their soils

• Proper guidelines when writing reports

• Leadership skills and their role in organisational management

• Strategic planning and strategies

• Livestock management

• Leadership skills

• The importance of Farm groups

• Log-frame benefits and limitations

• FARMS Groups

• The importance of the FARMS Groups approach

• Planning

• Plan ahead

Third answers to Q.1:

• Report writing

• Importance of local breeds of farm animals

• Planning

• Strategic planning

• Monitoring and evaluation

• SWOT analysis

• Local systems rather than junk foods

• Farmers deciding what they want to happen for sustainable management

• Conservation farming

• Listen more from farmers and don’t be Mrs Know-it-all

• Holistic approach to agriculture

• Leadership integrity, tenacity, service

• Crop diversification – not maize alone

• Agronomic and soil management practices

• How to manage farmers’ groups

• How to help form farmers’ groups

• Best application of log-frames

• Food security challenges facing the world

• Business planning

• Monitoring and Evaluation

• Investing in future farmers (youths)

• Rural leadership and teamwork

• Integral management

• Strategic planning

• How to work with farmers

• Improved report-writing skills 8

2. On Q.2, Participants promised to share this learning with a variety of specific named people and organisations.

3. On Q.3, participants specified the following intended actions: Teaching on paper recycling and fuel-saving stove making; Source treadle pumps for people;

Start bee-keeping; Initiate fish farming; Advocate for Conservation Farming trials on church land

• Pass on lessons learnt; Revamp a broken fuel-saving stove; Increase compost-making Establish a tree nursery for neem, avocado, orange, Cassia etc; Ensure that Conservation • Farming is taught and how to make fuel-saving stoves;

• Plant fruit trees around my house and strengthen agroforestry groups; Re-use plastic bags and avoid bringing more when visiting shops

• Lobby for adoption of best practices learnt with management; Incorporate business planning in training courses; Diversify poultry enterprises with compost-making and growing vegetables

• Adopt organic farming through training and demonstration; Plant 1,000 fruit tree seedlings in catchment area; Advise farmers on good pig houses

• Resuscitate and strengthen weak and dead farmers’ groups; Organise key farmer training;

Diversify cropping by promoting cassava, sweet potato, sorghum and millet alongside Conservation Farming

• Make an Action Plan for NRC Farm; Conduct a Training Needs Assessment at the NRC Farm;

Produce a Report of NRC Farm activities

• Practice Conservation Farming with integrated livestock, and apply management lessons learnt

• Sensitise smallholder farmers and form one Group; Train on soil management for conservation farming; Monitor and evaluate the Group’s farming progress

• Set up demonstration field on improved soil and water management; form Farmers’ Groups;

carry out a SWOT analysis of my organisation

• Help 14 Natural Resource Management Committees [of WESM] raise trees and plant at least 30,000; plant 20 trees on my private land; help 6 bee-keeping clubs to market their honey

• Train 80 Farmers’ representatives on business skills in August; TOT for establishing 40 fertiliser tree nurseries (e.g Faidherbia albida) to reach 5040 farmers; form 40 Farmers’ groups

• Train others especially on Conservation Farming, establishing one demonstration plot

• Plan for Human Resource Development with colleagues; introduce sustainable practices with farmers by integrating environmental re-afforestation

• Establish a school vegetable garden and carry out soil conservation practices

• Scale up Conservation Farming with communities; procure and distribute fuel-saving stoves;

train project staff on environmental management and gender aspects

• Orient field staff on key concepts of the training; promote FARMS Groups and sustainable intensification; intergate layers into my personal broiler chicken rearing in order to diversify

• Review our M&E system; circulate and share existing Reports to all relevant stakeholders;

introduce staff appraisal, mentoring & coaching; mentor Project Staff in concise Report-writing

• Enhance Farmer Group formation and development 9

• Conduct extension sensitisation meetings; facilitate conservation farming and sustainable intensification using compost; improve livestock management; carry out M&E; write a Report

• Open up a farm to set an example; practice conservation farming; rear livestock

• Pilot conservation farming with my own maize; make compost; plant 3 different types of fruit;

explore hay-making and other fodder conservation for my parents’ dairy farm

• Incorporate what I have learnt into my own organic farming; give a presentation to NRC students on what I have learnt

• Train Ministry of Agriculture staff on Management of Farmers’ groups; train 1,000 farmers on Conservation Farming with trees and on Farmer Group development; train 3 groups on Fodder establishment and utilisation in Dedza

• Reach out to more farmers; set up more demonstration plots; collect more data from farmers’ fields who practice agroforestry

• I believe things will improve in my community in the next 6 months…

• Improve on management issues for agriculture

• Help organise farmers around NRC into Groups; teach hay and silage making

• Train staff on key aspects learnt; work to help form FARMS Groups; demonstrate a change in the way I have been planning and reporting on the implementation of programme activities.


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Evaluation by participants Questionnaires were completed at the end of the workshop as manuals were distributed, just before certificates of attendance were issued. Results are reported below.

–  –  –

Any other general comments about the Workshop?

• The Workshop fees were cheap making up for the accommodation.

• Such Workshop should be held in a hotel and not an institution.

• Facilitators well experienced and provided good insights. Too much lecturing. Too many pictures in the presentations.

• Topics were very rich but due to time constraints difficult to discuss case studies/practicals eg SWOT, Business Plan. Logframe and M&E not adequately addressed. Course should be at least 7 or 14 days. Reduce content to suit time frame. Encourage Group Work. Spend more time discussing practical examples based on participant’s experience.

• Workshop used outdated information. Workshop should have more Malawi based material.

• Workshop an eye-opener on Agricultural Extension.

• Include a component on writing a Project Proposal.

• Workshop participants should meet after 6 months to review progress, success and problems to find the way forward. Invite most successful to LITA Tengeru/Bicton.

• Well done and thankyou!

Managing Sustainable Development: Improving Agricultural Management by Training & Extension 30th July - 3rd August 2012 NRC Lilongwe, Malawi Workshop Timetable

–  –  –

Action Plan:- a) What learned?

Strategic & Business Planning Discussion: Management Issues Buzz groups b) With whom to share? c) with use of the "Log 1330-1500 participants have faced Forum: Questions and issues so Management Quiz What to do in the next 6 months Frame" DW/EJW facilitated far Workshop Evaluation DW/EJW questionnaire. EJW/DW Break Break Break Break Break 1500-1530 Leadership, People Overview: Current Agricultural Management Analysis: Vision, Farm/Field visit at NRC Closing Ceremony & 1530-1700 Management & Training Needs Management Challenges facing Mission, SWOT & SMART discussing issues raised so far Certificate presentation Assessment EJW/DW Africa EJW/DW Adding value, marketing & PR Possible DVD or pictures or Debate: "GM or Organic" visit to NRC Farm Shop & Evening Open Forum or DVD Development Game or "Plough or Min Till" etc eating together at local food outlet

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