Over 30 students from Makerere University College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) under the student leadership were on 21st February, 2019 flagged off to Arua District for an outreach program to sensitize and train farmers about modern technologies in Climate Smart Agriculture.
The students were flagged off by the Principal CAES Prof. Bernard Bashaasha, the College Registrar Mr. Obura Edward and the Team Leader Ms. Vianney Baguma for the three-day activity (22nd-24th February, 2019).
The outreach was sponsored by the CAES Students’ Council and the college staff at an estimated budget of UGX11million.
The students President Ms. Hajara Nantume said the overall objective of the outreach was to engage with community leaders on possible ways of establishing a university field centre for dissemination of new, improved or modern agricultural techniques in Arua region.
“The theme of this outreach is to sensitize and train farmers about modern in climate smart agriculture. In a bid to extend our knowledge to the people of Arua, groups of students from the different courses developed different subthemes to train farmers on such as; Soil fertility management and organic farming, Agro forestry, Nutrition assessment and education, Post-harvest handling and Value addition and marketing,” Ms. Hajara explained.
The students' Publicity Secretary Mr. Martin Kasirye noted that Arua is one of the rural areas in Uganda that is experiencing livelihood challenges of food insecurity, poverty and unemployment due to uncertain weather conditions, which have discouraged farming.
He stressed that there is a potential of harnessing the capacity of the farmers from Arua, in order to advance development through job creation and promoting food security by disseminating climate smart agricultural techniques to enhance adoption and increase resilience to climate change.
“This can be possible by creating a venue for spreading modern organic and weather independent techniques to small holder farmers through demonstrations during the training.
The community is mostly relying indigenous information systems to cope with the changing climate because they have little access to climate smart agriculture technical knowledge, making them continuously experience weather-related stress in farming,”. Martin narrated.
With an outreach program and establishment of a university field site, propagation and dissemination of new modern farming techniques, agriculture students hope it can be possible to make communities in Arua aware of the methods which can help them to overcome losses associated with traditional farming methods.
“It will also help farmers to adjust from the already failing traditional farming systems to new and modern farming systems which are independent of weather conditions. Through use of environment independent farming systems, the challenge of weather related crop farming in the region will be overcome and this shall attract more investments in agriculture by farmers,” one of the students noted.
Like Arua, most communities in Uganda derive their livelihood from agriculture and are vulnerable to weather-related stress and climate change. There is vulnerability of communities due to shortage of food in terms of quality and quantity, inadequate access to safe water, extreme dry spells and flooding of water sources among others. The need for farmers to adopt Climate Smart Agricultural technologies through creating awareness of practical modern farming techniques is one of the possible means to enhance sustainable food production while boosting income and improving livelihood.
Article compiled by:
Principal Communication Officer, CAES
Veteran Professor changed Makerere and Higher Education
When Professor John Ssebuwufu ambled up to receive a certificate of recognition for his ‘exceptional’ contribution to higher education from the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) at Makerere University (MU), he was thinking of many things, such as rewarding staff, that he could have done differently to impact university education more.
But he did what he could have done, under the circumstances.
He presided over MU (in 1993) when student enrolment was 5,000 and left in 2004 when the population was surging to more than 15,000.
He emphasised the use of information communication technologies in almost all the institutions he had been involved in and sent many academic staff on exchanges to boost research and innovation. Now, more African universities engage in ground-breaking research.
So, he proceeded to accept his recognition and make his acceptance speech, which was mostly about gratitude.
Ssebuwufu, 74, who is currently the chancellor at Kyambogo University and the vice-chancellor of the University of Kisubi, is credited for his exemplary leadership and pragmatic methods that have shaped higher education in Uganda and Africa as a whole.
Japan Africa Dream Scholarship (JADS) Program 2021/2022
The Japan Africa Dream Scholarship (JADS) Program is a capacity building project by the AfDB and Japan which was initiated in 2017 with the aim of providing two-year scholarship awards to highly achieving African graduate students to enable them to undergo post-graduate studies (i.e. a two-year Master’s degree program) in selected priority development areas on the continent and Japan. The overarching goal the AfDB and the Government of Japan seek to attain is to enhance skills and human resources development in Africa in under the Bank’s High 5s agenda (i.e. “Feed Africa”, “Light up Africa”, “Industrialize Africa”, “Integrate Africa” and “Improve the quality of life of the people of Africa”) and key Japanese development assistance initiatives. JADS core areas of study focus include energy, agriculture, health, environmental sustainability, and engineering. The program also seeks to promote inter-university collaboration and university-industry partnerships between Japan and Africa. Upon completion of their studies, the JADS scholars are expected to return to their home countries to apply and disseminate their newly acquired knowledge and skills in the public and private sectors, and contribute to national and continental socio-economic development.
About the JADS program
The JADS Program is open to applicants from AfDB member countries with relevant professional experience and a history of supporting their countries’ development efforts who are applying to a graduate degree program in energy development and related discipline. The program does not provide scholarships to any other graduate degree program.
The scholarship program provides tuition, a monthly living stipend, round-trip airfare, health insurance, and travel allowance.
Upon completion of their studies, the beneficiary scholars are expected to return to their home countries to apply and disseminate their newly acquired knowledge and skills, and contribute to the promotion of sustainable development of their countries.
Who is Eligible to Apply?
The program is open to those who have gained admission to an approved Masters degree course at a Japanese partner university. Candidates should be 35 years old or younger; in good health; with a Bachelor’s degree or its equivalent in the energy area or related area; and have a superior academic record. Upon completion of their study programs, scholars are expected to return to their home country to contribute to its economic and social development.
- Applicant requests for information and application forms and procedures from the chosen JADS partner university. For any inquiries, please contact JADS@AFDB.ORG
- Applicant completes required documents and sends them to the university.
- University evaluates and selects applicants.
- University sends selected candidates to the AfDB.
- AfDB reviews submissions from universities, prepares and approves the final list.
- AfDB contacts selected awardees, and informs the universities.
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