Njala University and COOPI on Monday 15th June, 2020 commenced a five-day training program for Community Mobilizers and Project officers on vegetable crop production and management.
The training, which was held at the School of Agriculture and Food Sciences,Njala Campus brought together project supervisors from COOPI’s Pro-Act project from the beneficiary Districts of Port Loko, Bombali,Karene and Kambia.
On behalf of the Vice Chancellor and Principal of Njala University and the School Board, the Dean at School of Agriculture and Food Science,who doubles as Chairman for the opening ceremony Dr Abdulrahman Sesay welcomed participants from COOPI to the five-day training.
He emphasized the fact that these are not normal times and that the participants and the lecturers should follow the stipulated health guidelines on COVID -19 during the training.
The Dean recounted that Njala University has conducted similar trainings for COOPI in the past and was satisfied that the delivery of such courses have met the objectives of the training in the past.
He concluded by calling for baseline data to better understand the impacts such training interventions by Njala University have had in the overall transformation of farmers and appealed to the lecturers to integrate contemporary agricultural practices like nutritional security,water harvesting and conservation, and disease and pest management practices.
Osman Bangura, the Project Focal Lead and Officer at COOPI, commended Njala University for accommodating them and urged his colleagues to make use of the opportunity to improve their knowledge in working with farmers in various agricultural practices such as land preparation, management and many others.
He continued that the training would provide the respective project officers and community mobilizers with adequate knowledge on the monitoring of the project and also will provide backstopping for enlightening farmers on the processes involved in conducting their various farming practices.
Dr. Bah, the Lead Organizer and Head of Department Crop Science, noted that the training is a follow-up to the one previously conducted by his Department for farmer beneficiary groups.
The five-day training, he went on, would provide further technical support to Project supervisors and Community Mobilizers who will be working with these farmers.
Some of the key objectives of the training, according to him, include capacity building for community mobilizers on common vegetable production technology, disease and pest management, harvesting and post harvesting, and building the confidence of farmers to develop vegetable production and marketing amongst others.
COOPI, with financial support from the European Union, is implementing the Fostering Smallholder Agriculture for Sierra Leone.
The overall aim of the project is to improve food nutrition security for vulnerable population groups in Sierra Leone as well as indentifying promotion and capacity building of diversified vegetable production which is key for nutritional situation development in the rural areas.
Njala University is partnering with a number of international and national organisations, Governmental and Non-Governmental Organizations’ in providing support to research and training activities thereby contributing to new knowledge and capacity building in agriculture and other key areas.
©Public Relations Officer, Njala University