Dr. Oscar Koech from the University of Nairobi (UoN), Department of Land Resource Management and Agricultural Technology (LARMAT) between 18th- 29th October, 2021,  offered National Training Course to National staff from National Agricultural Training Institute (NARI) and the ministry of agriculture staff and researchers in Eretria.  The training was sponsored by Development of Smart Innovations through Research in Agriculture (DeSIRA), funded by International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The ten day training comprehensively addressed topics on feed production, conservation and utilization. The training addresses the regional challenges in feed and forage production, utilization and management in the Horn of Africa.

The training addressed the technical skills needed by national staff in adapting tom climate change impacts and invasive species management. The trainees were researchers working in the National Research Institute (NARI) in the field of forage improvement, livestock nutrition, livestock breeding and rangeland management. This was a multidisciplinary team of 18 male and 4 female trainees who were actively working towards improving livestock production in Eritrea. The University of Nairobi is contributing to regional capacity building efforts, with currently five students from the Ministry of Agriculture and NARI in Eritrea pursuing Master of Science in animal production and breeding at the faculty of Agriculture supported by DeSIRA project.



Submitted bykyalo on Thu, 11/11/2021 - 20:07

University of Nairobi and Biovision Team at the entrance to LARMAT On 8 November 2021, a follow-up meeting was held between Biovision Foundation (the sponsor of the AATC) and the Department of Land Resource Management and Agricultural Technology (LARMAT). From the Biovision side were Frank Eyhorn (CEO) and Fabian Kohler (Program Officer). Representatives from the University of Nairobi (LARMAT/AATC) and NutriProduce were Prof. Richard Onwonga (Chairman, LARMAT) , Janeth Chepkemoi (Project Supervisor), and Noel Templer (logistics officer), respectively. The meeting rationale was to consult with the key training leads concerning the recently concluded Agroecology and Agrobiodiversity Training Course (AATC). Three significant aspects characterized the meeting: i) an update portion from the AATC 2021, ii) a review of the collaboration areas and possible new ventures, and iii) next steps and a discussion of the way forward.  

 In terms of the update, the activities undertaken during the training were highlighted, followed by a clip presentation from AATC 2021 students. Prof. Onwonga briefly introduced the University of Nairobi (UoN), significantly highlighting the University’s opportunities, and the department of LARMAT in particular, to host AATC. The Chairman further emphasized the University’s commitment to promoting sustainable production systems and training of next-level change makers.

The meeting yielded several significant recommendations and action points both from the donors and project leads. Some of the recommendations were a) upgrading AATC to a (post-graduate) Diploma course, b) collaboration with other like-minded universities at the national and regional levels, c) incubation of innovative projects and d) linking students to mentorship and internship programs, apprentice platforms, and practitioners. A  framework for conceptualizing the synergies and drafting a case for implementation will form the basis for the  next discussion.