UNDP and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) in partnership with Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) held a three-day training, mid March, for project staff members drawn from seven northern states in which the project “Integrated Approach Programme For Fostering Sustainability And Resilience For Food Security In The Savannah Zones Of Northern Nigeria” is being implemented.
The objective of the training was to introduce the UNDP-GEF FS project to the participants, equip them with information and skills needed to enable them effectively communicate the project, its results and impact on the lives of families and communities in their respective States. The training also focused on providing insights into the challenges of food and nutrition security and ways to enhance it in Nigeria. Participants for the training were drawn from Adamawa, Benue, Gombe, Katsina, Kano, Jigawa and Nassarawa States.
The project to be implemented over a period of five years is aimed at enhancing long-term sustainability and resilience of food production systems in Nigeria, build greater community resilience to climate risks and other shocks that drive food insecurity. It is also intended to scale up sustainable land and water management and climate-smart agricultural practices in support of environmental and social development benefits at farm and landscape level.
The training was useful in equipping participants with tools needed for them to effectively communicate the project to the public and communities within which it was being implemented. The participants were also equipped with key information and skills needed for them to be able to document success stories and lessons being learnt during the course the project implementation cycle.
The training also emphasized that in the error of new media, as a result of a huge audience spending time on social media platforms, it was important that project staff invest time in creating and sharing content on these platforms. The participants were therefore trained on how to use social media tools for development communication and public engagement.
National Project Coordinator, Mr. Abdullahi Garba Abubakar, urged participants invest time in understanding the project aim and objectives as they were expected to educate people in their States and communities on its activities.
“These communities are supposed to upscale what they are doing in terms of Sustainable Land and Water Management, and Climate Smart Agricultural practices. The technologies we are deploying will be stepped down to the local communities so that farmers will know how to apply them in their activities in order increase,” added Mr. Abubakar while emphasizing that this will only be successful if local communities are aware of the project being implemented and its usefulness to their ongoing farming activities.
During the implementation period of the project, two local governments in each of the seven states and five communities in each local government making seventy communities (70) have been selected as implementation sites. The farmers in those communities will be taught the different technologies that will help increase yield from the produce at the same time protect the environment.