As part of an innovative project to launch later this year, VWB is working with educational publisher & new media developer Lifelearn and the University of Calgary, to launch a mobile technology based training model.
There is global recognition that smartphones and new media technology can have a huge impact on smallholder agriculture, from sms updates on crop prices and weather, pest management to outbreak and emergency response.
Yet our investigations showed few examples of mobile phone based training at the village level. In this ambitious project, project team members and NUOL faculty will train PAHWs to use smartphone-based apps as training resources to add to the mentoring and training resources they receive in person. PAHWs will also be able to sms each other about latest developments and upload photos of the cases they encounter.
In researching topics for the mobile based training, our team was excited to learn about various methods households employ to feed poultry and use resources efficiently. Anne Drew and husband Thom recently met a woman farmer who uses pickled banana stem, grasses and amaranth to prepare feed for her poultry. We hope that through this technology we can help facilitate more farmers to share their learnings and techniques and train and support each other.
More information will follow later this year when the smartphone project goes live!
Thanks to the IDRC, Lifelearn and University of Calgary for their generous funding and in-kind support.