The National- Wednesday, January 26, 2011
By STEPHANIE ELIZAH
AGRICULTURE and Livestock officers from Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands and PNG will this year focus on communicating simplified awareness materials on agriculture and livestock to farmers in the region.
This assurance was given by 20 participants who graduated with certificates last Friday after attending a two-week training course on production of agricultural extension materials at the Madang Resort Hotel.
The workshop, facilitated by Centre for Technical Agriculture (CTA) and Institute of Research, Extension and Training in Agriculture, involved participants learning to create simplified agriculture informational materials like pamphlets, brochures, flyers, posters and manuals for farmers.
CTA course director Prof Anthony Youdeowei said the aim of the course was to teach technical agriculture and livestock officers on developing and producing simple agricultural extension materials for communicating agricultural information and technologies to farmers.
“We hope that the knowledge and skills gained from this course will be of lasting benefit to your professional careers and to the development of capacities in producing agricultural materials in your various institutions to promote the communication of agricultural research results to smallholder farmers in the pacific,” he said.
Vanuatu Agriculture College livestock trainer Darryl Maseng said the training made the technical officers more aware of how important it was to ensure farmers understand the information they receive from the livestock officers.
“A lot of times, we release information to farmers in technical languages which we expect the farmers to understand but most often they do not.
“This creates a lot of misunderstandings and sets back a lot of projects all because of this lack of communicating on our part,” Maseng said.
Solomon Island assistant information officer Rosemary Alabae, in thanking the PNG government for hosting the training, also urged the participants to apply the knowledge they received.
“Let us be the agents for change.
“Let us work together with the farmers to disseminate information and increase production in rural farming.”