Monday, November 25, 2013

Frontline Extension Workers trains on IPM Curriculum

Ensa Colley M&E Nema

The National Agricultural Land and Water Management Development Project (Nema) in participation with the Plant Protection Services gathered Agricultural Extension workers, Conservation Field Assistants (CFAs), Project Staff, Focal Point Nema project, Department of Agriculture Staff etc, for them to be able to understand Integrated Pest Management (IPM) control and protection.
The training will run from 7th to 9th November, 2013 and is been held at Jenoi Agricultural Farmers Training Centre in Lower River Region; funded by Nema project and is been implemented by the Plant Protection Services as a Service Provider.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Mr. Ensa Colley Monitoring and Evaluation Officer Nema project said thanked all the participants for accepting their invitation saying that as frontline workers, Nema project will work with them to implement a success project in their respective areas on rice integrated pest management.
Dwelling on the importance of the training, Colley said that Neme project has signed an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Plant Protection Services to executive the training adding that with calibers of facilitators, he have no doubt that the trainers will learn a lot in the three days.
The three days training, Colley added is Training of Trainers (ToT) which will also avail the participants the opportunity to be expose to the IPM curriculum and manual document, principles and concepts of IPM, pesticides and application techniques, insect pests of rice and their management among other important topics.
Giving background of Nema project, Colley said that the project has been designed to increase income level of the rural folks, through improved productivity, based on sustainable land and water management practices.
According to him, Nema project finance at a tune of US $64 million, and with IFAD contributing half of the amount adding that Nema is one of the biggest agricultural project in The Gambia.
“We need a lot of sacrifice to implement a successful programme because IPM need a lot of applications ranging from weeds of rice and their management, vertebrate pests of rice and their management etc,” he went to say that “It is only through the collective and collaborative efforts of all, built on a foundation of responsible partnership, that we can make meaningful progress in the realisation of the goal of the project,” he said.
The overall goal of the Nema project, Colley said is to sustainably increase food security and raise income of smallholders, particularly rural women and youth, by improving rice and vegetable production through land and water management practices.
In addition, the Nema project is targeting all the six agricultural regions in the country, with a focus on women and youth to enable them to participate more actively in development initiatives.
According to Colley, the project will intervene in water management for rice production, vegetable schemes, access and market infrastructure, high quality seed production, agriculture business development and training, among others.
Speaking earlier on, Mr. Landing Sonko, Head Plant Protection Services cum Training Coordinator IPM for Nema emphises on rice cultivation saying that Gambian consume rice four times daily.
Therefore, in increasing our rice productivity is a great concern to the government of The Gambia as well as donor partners to see the yield of farmers increase.
According to him, the field workers are very instrumental in implementing a successful project saying that the extension workers are working directly with the farmers on a daily basis on their farms.

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