Development of Human Resource in IPM/FFS within MAIL
IPM/FFS Facilitators: 86 field level plant protection and extension officers from the Directorate of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock (DAIL) of 14 provinces of Afghanistan have been trained on IPM and FFS. This group forms the core group of facilitators in the project who are conducting Farmer Field School (FFS) to develop the skills and capacity of farmers.
Master Trainers: Along with them, a core group of eight master trainers have been developed who are involved in planning, coordination and monitoring of FFS activities in the provinces.
IPM Specialists: 24 MAIL staff have been pursuing higher studies in IPM at Masters level at two universities in India; three at Tamil Nadu Agriculture University (TNAU) in Coimbatore and 21 at Allahabad Agriculture Institute, also known as Sam Higginbottom Institute of Agriculture, Technology and Sciences (SHIATS) in Allahabad. 6 are expecting to complete their study by 2013 and the rest by 2014.
Identification of appropriate technologies on IPM
A set of environmental friendly technologies have been developed and tested for wheat, melon, potato, rice and pomegranate through a series of field based action research to address the key problems of farmers in these crops. The technologies have already been introduced to FFS to disseminate among farmers in the targeted communities. For more on the Technologies. Wheat… Melon... Rice… Pomegranate…
Development of curriculum and methodologies for FFS
Drawing on the lessons and feedback from a number of field-tests based on the specific situation of Afghanistan, FFS curricula for wheat, melon, potato and rice have been developed and are now being used in FFS. The curriculum comes with a set of appropriate methodologies identified and developed during the TOT for facilitation of regular FFS sessions and activities. For details of the curriculum. Wheat… Melon… Potato… Rice…
Capacity building of farmers
From 2011 to November 2013, 322 FFSs, 129 on wheat, 102 on melon, 29 on potato, and 62 on rice were conducted in 14 provinces of Afghanistan. 8005 farm households were trained to improve their management capacity in these major crops, bringing the benefits of FFS to 56,035 peoples including men, women and children, considering 7 is the average size of an Afghan family.
Increased yields, production and incomes of farmers from agriculture
Farmers who participated in FFS have begun to apply the new technologies on their fields, making significant progress in increasing yields and reducing production costs. Based on the recorded data, crop yields in most of the FFSs have increased from 50-100%, while in some FFSs the yield increases are three times the farmers’ average yields in the area, especially on wheat and melon with a significant reduction in production cost. There has been no need for any chemical pesticide use. Chemical fertilizers use has reduced to half. The technologies introduced in FFS are making significant contribution to improving the environment and climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts. For more on the results see FFS results.
Development of information materials for sharing
A number of videos, posters, leaflets and bulletins have been developed and distributed to farmers and various stakeholders including government, non-government and private organizations to further strengthen the dissemination process of technologies, as part of the overall communication strategies of the project.
Development of database
A data-base is already in place for timely recording and synthesis of quality information to assess the actual performance of FFS and to share the results with other development practitioners. The data-base serves as an important source of information to see the specific outcomes of the project. The Database uses GPS values to indicate the location of FFS conducted in the FFS map constructed by the project.