How to reach out to illiterate rural dairy farmers in Uganda

Under the current COVID-19 restrictions, the experts of Bles Dairies Consultancy cannot fly around the world anymore to visit and support their ongoing dairy development projects in amongst others Indonesia, Vietnam, Ethiopia, Uganda and Nigeria. Martin de Jong of Bles Dairies Consultancy explains:  

“Via Skype, Zoom and Webinars we maintain contact with local extension officers in those countries. But, how do you reach farmers in the rural area, who have no electricity nor internet connection; but do have a smartphone charged by a small solar panel?

Within the Uganda IFC Pearl Dairy Development Programme, we are guiding and coaching 55 extension workers. These extension workers support over 700 rural dairy farmers. In 2020, we had scheduled four major campaigns on four technical topics. Unfortunately, hands-on training is not possible for the time being.

As alternative, we have started to prepare five short one-minute videos for each of the technical themes. We send these videos via the extension workers to the smart phone of the farmers. After each video, the extension workers call the farmers to discuss what has been presented in the video in order to implement the presented activities on his farm.

The videos are very simple and based on pictures with a right and wrong practice and a voice over in the local language. The first series of five videos on tick-control (prevention and spraying) will be launched soon.”

 

Photos: cattle crushes for tick prevention and spraying.