Revised training of trainers manual on sweetpotato available

An updated version of the popular Training of Trainers (ToT) manual on Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Sweetpotato is now available.  The manual, designed to potentially serve a wide variety of audiences (nutritionists and agronomists, policymakers, extension workers, community development workers, leaders of farmer organizations, farmers, is a much sought-after training and learning resource in major sub‐regions of Sub-Saharan Africa: Eastern and Central Africa, Southern Africa, and West Africa.

In 2017-2018, the Building Nutritious Food Baskets (BNFB) project led and coordinated a review of the ToT manual developed by the Reaching Agents of Change project in 2013. The BNFB project team worked closely with International Potato Center (CIP) scientists and Tanya Stathers – a Senior Consultant based at the Natural Resources Institute (NRI), University of Greenwich to review the manual. The team identified gaps, added in new knowledge, harmonized content on critical areas and produced targeted gender mainstreamed learning modules for training adult learners on critical priority areas along the OFSP value chain. The materials emphasize learning-by-doing. 

The goal of developing and revising the manual is to ensure sustained capacity for various stakeholders along the Orange-fleshed sweetpotato (OFSP); about the latest developments in sweetpotato production and utilization.  CIP has been collaborating with national institutions in countries Mozambique, Tanzania, and Nigeria to host an annual course entitled: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Sweetpotato . The course has progressed from initially having CIP scientists working closely with national scientists to implement it, to national scientists and partners independently organizing and conducting the course. In subsequent years, institutions in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Malawi and others have been capacitated in conducting the course.

Key topics reviewed and updated include:  Facilitating Training Sessions; Sweetpotato Varietal Selection; Nutrition; Seed Systems, and Monitoring, Learning and Evaluation. However, other topics were slightly improved and formatted for consistency.  All the topics have an accompanying presentation and memory aid cards.  Not all the materials will be relevant to all audiences, but facilitators can adapt the content to their audience and facilitation best practices.

These ToT manuals are international public goods and CIP encourages all partner institutions, academic institutions, and other users to adapt and reproduce these instructional materials and, where appropriate, integrate the teaching and learning into existing curriculum’ Joyce Maru Capacity Development and Communication Specialist – BNFB

The updated manuals and accompanying slide decks are available online Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Sweetpotato

In addition, BNFB has developed an additional training of trainers (ToT) module titled Training Module on Biofortification: A Sustainable Solution to Hidden Hunger The module includes a PowerPoint presentation, an annotated facilitator’s guide and a handout for participants. It is useful for setting the context or as an introduction to biofortification during training on specific biofortified crops, for example the ToT module on Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Sweetpotato. However, it is also self-contained and may be delivered independently if that is more appropriate for the target audience.

The Building Nutritious Food Basket (BNFB) was a three-year project (November 2015 to October 2018) implemented in Nigeria and Tanzania and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The goal of the project was to accelerate and support scaling up of biofortified crops for food and nutrition security and to help reduce hidden hunger by catalyzing sustainable investment for the utilization of biofortified crops (OFSP, PVA maize, high iron beans and vitamin A cassava) at scale. BNFB  helped develop institutional, community and individual capacities to produce and consume biofortified crops.  The objectives of the project were to strengthen the enabling environment for increased investments in biofortified crops and to develop institutional and individual capacities to produce and consume biofortified crops.

We thank the following authors who made contribution into revising the manual: Topic 1: Joyce Maru and Hilda Munyua; Topic 3: Ted Carey, Robert Mwanga and Maria Andrade; Topic 4: Robert Ackatia-Armah, Fred Grant, Netsayi Mudege, Joyce Maru, Hilda Munyua; Topic 5: Margaret McEwan, Sam Namanda, Jan Low, Kwame Ogero, Srini Rajendran, Topic 12: Godfrey Mulongo, Jan Low, Sindi Kirimi, Srini Rajendran, Julius Okello and Joyce Maru . Luka Wanjohi, Eric Muthuri and Frank Ojwang have provided invaluable support throughout the process.

Blog by Joyce Maru

africa, Agriculture, sweetpotato