The Enhancing Nutrition of Upland Farming Families” (ENUFF) project of the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC) is implemented by SNV Netherlands Development Organization in partnership with Agrisud International in Oudomxay and Huaphan Provinces. Agrisud has developed a series of Master-Farmer booklets to support the dissemination of techniques from farmer to farmer in the framework of the ENUFF Project.
The Master-Farmers are selected among the farmers who have regularly participated in the agricultural activities initiated by the project and have shown commitment and mastery of techniques in specific agriculture production over multiple years of adoption. They receive technical and pedagogical training from the project, in order to be able to transfer these practices to other families in their villages. To support them in their tasks, the ENUFF project has published various series of technical booklets specifically made for the Master-Farmers by Agrisud International.
These Master-Farmer booklets were designed as a guidebook to remind them of the different steps of implementation of the technical training in the field, with practices. It does not have a vocation to be only read out loud or use in theoretical training. The technical contents have been simplified and modified based on the farmer field experiences in order to match the local context and the adoptions made by the farmers. The technical language has been simplified as well to be able to be understood and easily translated by the Master-Farmers in their ethnic group dialect. Each booklet is well illustrated to help the Master-Farmer in his explanations. The Master-Farmer is encouraged to speak from experience as well, as it is the most effective way to promote a new practice.
The effectiveness of these booklets depends on the technical and facilitation skills of the Master-Farmers. Putting these booklets in the hands of an untrained farmer will have no effect or even be counterproductive. These tools will be effective in condition (i) that the producer “masters” the practice (= that he has been trained in this practice, that he applies it on his farm, and that he has adopted its application), and (ii) that he has capacities in the transfer of knowledge and skills (= training on facilitation techniques and use of the booklet). Booklets are printed in A4 and in color, duplex printing, laminated to resist field conditions, with a metal spiral binding on top of the page that allows for complete spinning. When the Master-Farmer is looking at the explanation page, the corresponding illustration page should be behind.
The first series of Master-Farmers booklets published on ALiSEA is to support the establishment and management of improved pastures for big livestock. The series contains 3 Master-Farmer booklets on the following topics: 1) Planting fodder crops; 2) Harvesting fodder seeds; 3) The management of an improved pasture and the selection of the animal shelter. For more information about the Master-Farmer network and booklets, contact Claire Kieffer for French and English language speakers ([email protected]) or Khamphao Thongchanh for Lao language speakers ([email protected]).