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Animal Traction Network for Eastern and Southern Africa
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Empowering Farmers with Animal Traction into the 21st Century:
The workshop report
Click here to download a detailed and illustrated report of this workshop. This 70-page document with many colour photographs is in PDF format that can be printed or read on-line. (The resolution of the photos has been reduced to speed up downloading time: however the file size is 1.1Mb and the file may take several minutes to download).
If you do not have Adobe Acrobat 4 which is needed to view and print this pdf file, you can download it free of charge from http://www.adobe.com
Click here to see information on the proceedings, now available
workshop theme, ‘Empowering farmers with animal traction into
the 21st century’, led discussions towards recognising the importance of
the smallholder farmers in their contribution to global food security. Most
smallholder farmers are resource poor and constitute over 80% of domestic food
producers in Sub Saharan Africa. That notwithstanding, smallholder farmers
have been marginalised in the era of mechanisation – wrongly perceived as
motorisation – hence supporting the minority large-scale farmers. Sadly,
this marginalisation has resulted in an exponential increase in numbers below
the poverty line particularly in Africa and other third world countries.
Fortunately, draught animal power is gaining recognition after close to a
decade of lobbying by its promoters. More action on the ground is needed
particularly in changing attitudes of stakeholders – especially potential
users – as this is indeed one of the greatest constraints.
the workshop, emphasis was laid on working out ways of impacting positively on
end users by increasing food production. Thus, the smallholder farmer remains
the prime client. A need for integrating different sectoral approaches at all
levels of the project cycle including on and off-farm research is necessary.
The aim is to achieve a holistic output with adequate food and improved
livelihoods as a measure. It was with this in mind that workshop outputs were
synthesised and action plans developed.
1. To share regional experiences on empowering farmers
and entrepreneurs on the use of animal traction.
above objectives were addressed in the form of thematic paper presentations in
plenary sessions, poster presentations, evening sessions, a field visit and
group discussions. At the end of the workshop, strategic plans (with action
plans) were developed.
total of five sub-themes were addressed in plenary sessions within the first
two days of the workshop. Experiences of stakeholders in animal traction were
presented as follows:
visits and demonstration
last two days of the workshop were spent between group discussions and plenary
presentations. Thematic groups were formed and requested to develop action
plans on the respective themes. Both long and short term plans were developed.
Thereafter, the plans were presented in plenary session for discussion,
appropriate changes made and specific workshop participants assigned specific
tasks. Each task was allocated a realistic time frame.
requiring action planning were divided broadly into four categories:
Issues such as opening a web-site to strengthen networking by ATNESA and using the site for information exchange and dissemination were suggested by almost every group. The summary below does not represent all key issues addressed in the groups, but mentions some important issues unique to the groups.
Regarding policy and socio-economic issues, ways of involving policy makers (government officials and donors) in activities on the ground, and aggressive sensitisation of everybody on the good of animal traction were suggested.
animal issues, capacity building in the form of training at both extensionist
and end user level were emphasised. On-farm testing of research
recommendations of past animal husbandry projects (e.g. harnessing, feeding
regimes and others in relation to work animals) should be carried out while
ensuring that existing indigenous practices and knowledge are incorporated
whenever they are complimentary.
recommendations from the technical group were: on-farm research on improvement
of implement design; quality control of implements; participation in trade
fairs and agricultural shows; facilitation of exchange visits of users and
the workshop, a new ATNESA Committee was elected.
The Workshop Proceedings, which will contain copies of
all the papers
presented at the workshop, the workshop
conclusions and the addresses
of participants is now available.
Click here to download a detailed and
illustrated report of this workshop.
Click here to download a detailed and illustrated report of this workshop.
corrections and feedback relating to this website are welcome