From August 22 to 24, Caritas Pakistan held training on “On Farm Adaptive Research OFAR” for staff of Smallholder Adaptive Farming and Biodiversity Network SAFBIN in Islamabad-Rawalpindi Diocese.
Ten Village Resource Persons VRPs and two District Project Officers attended sessions on types of farm research, stages of OFAR, difference between researcher led and farmer led research. A group workshop was also held on designing block designs for experimental farming. Farmer kits and climate change posters were also handed over to participants.
Amir Irfan, the program’s national coordinator for livelihood and food security reviewed the ongoing SAFBIN program conducted in Sargodha and Khushab districts since April 2018.
“We shall open new farmer field schools to combine farmer’s practices and innovation. Mathematical conversions on land units helped VRPs in better understanding of using seeds and fertilizers,” he said.
Dr. Shaheen Iqbal consultant Adaptive Research Agriculture shared techniques of sample selection, non-treatment operations and data registration. “Planting the same crops weakens some farmlands. Adding other varieties in the same plot can increase the harvest,” he said.
Mr. Amjad Gulzar Executive Director Caritas Pakistan urged VRPs to share their learning with farmers. “Learning these things in a strutted manner will further build the capacity of our staff. We hope it brings a positive change in rural communities,” he said urging all to do more research on current trends in farming.