Insufficient Agriculture Extension Workers' Training Affecting Farm Yields
A Consortium of some Civil Society Organizations in the Agriculture sector has noted that insufficient capacity-building training for agriculture extension workers is negatively impacting progress in the implementation of agro-forestry projects in some parts of the country.
Executive Director of the CCAP Synod of Livingstonia Development Department (SOLDEV) Kenneth Sakala whose organization is a partner of the consortium says the concern comes in the wake of some strange diseases and failure by farming households to adopt some new innovative agricultural technologies for some crops and livestock.
“SOLDEV which is implementing a Conserve Malawi project in the Traditional Authority Mpherembe in Mzimba wants to ensure that extension workers have capacity and ably assist farmers in making profits from their farming,” said Sakala.
This week partners of the consortium visited the project implementation area of SOLDEV in Mzimba to appreciate the progress of its project in the district.
He added: "So what we are doing is that implementation partners of the Conserve Malawi project visit each other and discuss successes and challenges where recommendations are made aimed at ensuring that it has reached its goals.”
Among other things, the Conserve Malawi project promotes agro-forestry, including best practices, sustainable techniques, crop diversification, and soil management.
Another partner of the consortium, Tearfund programs Manager, Aaron Lewani said his organization is working with faith-based formations working in the fringes of protected areas implementing the Conserve Malawi Project across the country stressing the importance of a multi-sectoral approach in addressing the food deficit.
“We want to among other things ensure that more households have food in their homes through various approaches we have initiated in this project,” explained Lewani.
Traditional Authority Mpherembe hailed SOLDEV and Tearfund for empowering communities with knowledge and skills to become key partners in promoting sustainable agriculture practices which have helped to uplift the lives of his subjects.
Noted the Inkosi: “Fruits of this project are seen in this area and with what people are experiencing in their households there is a need to replicate it into other areas so that more farmers benefit.”
The Conserve Malawi Project is a three-and-a-half-year project implemented by a consortium of Civil Society Organizations namely: SOLDEV, Assemblies of God Care, FRIM, and Malawi Plant Genetic Resource Centre with funding from Jersey Overseas Aid (JOA) through Tearfund Malawi office.