Suriname: Capacity building bears fruit

Ministry extension staff (group 2) trained in the COLEACP Field Training Workshop method

Training-of-trainers on safe use of pesticides, crop protection and Field Training Workshops for extension workers and researchers of MAAHF Suriname

In Suriname, the primary support to famers is provided through the extension services of the Agriculture sub-directorate of the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Husbandry and Fisheries (MAAHF). A need was identified for Ministry extension staff to receiving training in COLEACP’s Field Training Workshop method to upgrade their technical and training capacity.

Support was provided under two projects: the Inter-American Development Bank-Japan Special Fund Poverty Reduction Program (IDB/JPO) project “Strengthening Female Entrepreneurship in Brokopondo, Wanica, Sipaliwini and Marowijne”; and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Suriname Agriculture Market Access Project. In 2019, each of these projects held training-of-trainers, for 20 and 27 participants, respectively.

The objective was for participants to improve their adult education skills and technical knowledge to be better able to advise farmers on implementing standards of Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), and to disseminate technical knowledge to farmers, particularly on crop protection and safe use of pesticides. The training is fully in line with the Ministry’s efforts to implement GAP standards at farming level.

The extension workers received coaching while they trained farmers using the COLEACP Field Training Workshop method. By September 2019, the extension workers had passed on training to 89 farmers. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic and restrictive measures in place, no classroom training courses in GAP have been delivered yet.

The training was facilitated by Jenna Wijngaarde, Farm Assurer Manager for Capricorn Projekt BV in Suriname and COLEACP National Relay in the country. Jenna herself was a participant in COLEACP training-of-trainers, and was able to pass on the baton to a new field of trainers.

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