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SCP/GAFSP concludes training for enumerators and field supervisors

June 28, 2016 By Victoria Saffa

The Programme Management Unit (PMU) of the Smallholder Commercialisation Programme/Global Agriculture and Food Security Programme (SCP-GAFSP) last Thursday ended a two day training of enumerators and field supervisors as part of beneficiary profiling and baseline survey, at the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Security compound Bo, southern Sierra Leone.

The training exercise, according to the Interim Programme Manager for the SCP-GAFSP Muhammad Ajmal Bhatti, was to overhaul their operations following a complete standstill as a result of the Ebola outbreak in the country in mid 2014 until late 2015.

The project also focuses on agricultural productivity growth, linking farmers to markets, and increased capacity and technical skills.

GAFSP supports the medium and long-term interventions needed to ensure strong and stable policies and increased investment in agriculture in the poorest countries in the world, while SGAFSP focuses on four key areas of reducing transfer and transaction cost, adoption of higher yielding technologies, water management, technical assistance, institution building and capacity development.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with Concord Times after the training, SCP/GAFSP Mr. Bhatti said the exercise was aimed at mapping out farmers that are associated with their programme, as they might be engaged during profiling of beneficiaries and survey exercise that would commence across the thirteen districts in the country.

He said they would only focus on targeting Agro-Business Centre beneficiaries in  Kenema, Koinadugu, Kono and Kambia districts, while in the other nine districts they would have to cover Agro-Business Centre beneficiaries, Farmers Based Organisations (FBO’s), farmers feed schools, Inland Valley Swamps (IVS)  associations as well as the Tree Crop beneficiaries.

Mr. Bhatti said the programme at present has no data on farmers and beneficiaries, which according to makes the survey imperative as they need to know the status of farmers, adding that they were enthusiastic to embark on the beneficiary profiling exercise to determine what kind of inputs, training, fertiliser and even seedlings farmers require.

He explained that following the data collection, they would be in a better position to plan for value for money and do better monitoring and good evaluation as to how to plan their future strategies.

He said his expectations were pretty higher after having a close interaction with enumerators and supervisors, adding that he saw great interest in their efforts to learn more about the template, as demonstrated by questions they asked during the interactive session.

“The morale and capacity level are indeed very high,” he noted and added that if such were to continue he would be hopeful of getting quality data from the enumerators, to help them with the quantitative and qualitative outcome from this exercise.

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