This last week, in the Faculty of Agriculture, all PAHWs (Primary Animal Health Workers) from the Houychiem community in Laos attended the last two big gathering events for the current Foodlive Camlao project.
On Day 1, all PAHWs participated in a training for cattle reproduction and obstetrics with several of the university professors and our own vet, Margot. Since PAHWs have a lot of experience as farmers, we used a group format to understand and integrate their knowledge into the training. The best way to practice identifying a calf position was using a stuffed animal and a fake uterus! The day concluded in with a farm visit to practice Burdizzo castration on livestock. They were all very enthusiastic to learn about the new techniques!
Day 2 brought discussion of the “One Health” concept and more specifically, the health risks that can be associated with being a PAHW. The group discussed the impact of animal diseases on human health, the impact of climate change and urbanization on farming activities and the impact of poor use of antibiotics. The PAHWs went on to visit a forage and silage production units and were very interested in learning the different types of grass they could grow for their cattle and how many cattle they can feed with one ray of grass field. They also learned about biomedical waste disposal by visiting a facility that was built with VWB support!
In the afternoon, all PAHWs put on their brand new T-shirts to receive their final certificate from Prof. Fongsamouth and Erin, VWB’s executive director who came from Canada to visit our Lao project. They also received signboards for their house, scoring attestations, “menus” with all the services they can offer and the prices for them to advertise their work in the village office. Village chiefs, staff from the Ministry of Agriculture, the Province and the District Agriculture and Forestry Offices attended the ceremony, as well as teachers from the Faculty who were involved in the PAHW training. We look forward to working with the Faculty of Agriculture to expand the project and conduct new PAHW training throughout Laos!
Prof. Kampasong giving instructions to Phonethip, Khamla and Vanthong for the group work
Kouadouayang, Kamphoun, Xayphone, Lenyang and Vongsong reflectiong on the impact of urbanization
Prof Sisavath, Khamhuk, Sweden, Sophone and Boun in front of the Biomedical waste disposal device
Prof Viengsakoun explaining the recipe for grass silage production
Latee demonstrating how to identify calf position
Phomma describing the signs of calving in cattle
Prof Viengksakoun and PAHWs in an Elephant grass field