Learning activities

The following describes a range of collaboratively developed learning activities used in the project to date – educational activities that acknowledge local context and are designed to be inclusive and empowering for local women, their families and their communities. 

Please contact us for more information or detail on any of the learning activities as described below.

Village Community Educator Teams Training

A process of providing training and mentoring to local men and women as Village Community Educators – adult educators who roll out training within their own communities. This is an important focus within the project that aims to ensure local community members develop adult education skills; skills that in the short-term contribute to the project but most importantly in the long-term are of ongoing value to them and their communities.

Family Teams Program

The Family Teams Program is provided to village communities. This includes providing training and capacity building to local project leaders and village community education teams.  All of the training is underpinned by a gender awareness approach. The Family Teams Program (formally known as the Family Heads Workshop) is a substantial component of the project. The overall aims of the Family Teams program are to:

  1. Provide one female and one male family head from a household (often couples, but also can be a widow and adult son etc) with a series of workshops and family activities that will enable them to work as a family team and to plan together the further development of their agricultural activities. The program can also be used with full family teams (adults, young adults and youth).
  2. Begin a process of gender awareness, especially in the area of the gendered division of labour, family decision-making and financial practices .
  3. Provide learning activities and family farm development resources/tools that are suitable for those with low literacy and limited education.

There are four modules that make up this program:

  • Module 1: Working as a family team for family goals (one day workshop)

This workshop introduces the concept of a family team as an effective and inclusive way to work as a smallholder family. Family heads engage in a range of activities that map their current division of labour and then together consider better ways to work as a family. The family heads also look at possible family goals and determine together farming goals, financial goals and general family goals.

  • Module 2: Planning your family farm as a family team (half-day workshop or individual activity with each family team)

In this activity, family heads/teams work together to map their gardens/blocks in order to identify their agricultural activities and space allocation, water sources, housing, animal shelters and other assets as well as noting terrain and travel time. They then draw how they would like to see their farm in five years. The final step is to identify the assets, constraints and challenges and possible solutions in order to design a one year, and three year plan of development.

  • Module 3: Feeding your family team

This workshop uses group activities to enable participants to identify the range of foods they grow and the ones they buy. The group work together to sort foods into food groups (energy, body building, health protection) and consider how to plan family meals across a 24-hour period that cover all groups. This activity is also undertaken for times of drought to enable families to have greater knowledge of how to adapt in times of food shortage.

  • Module 4: Communicating and decision-making as a family team (one-day workshop)

This workshop enables family heads to explore communication issues within the family and to consider the importance of shared decision-making, especially in the areas of family farm activities and financial decision-making. The activities cover skills and attitudes as well as exploring the cultural and gender dimensions of communication.

Financial Training

Village-based training aimed at building the financial literacy and business skills of women and their families including; Budget training (provided by Fresh Produce Development Agency); Sustainable Livelihoods and Record and Book-keeping training (provided by the Integrated Agricultural Training Program of the University of Natural Resources and Environment); and Budgeting, Mobile Phone Banking and Saving training (provided by Nationwide Micro Bank).

Agriculture Training

Agricultural training including Farm Production Techniques, Crop Protection and Basic Irrigation training (provided by the National Agricultural Research Institute); and Container Gardening training (provided by the Fresh Produce Development Agency).

‘Maria’s family’ Books

Early literacy readers for children and their parents that also include key messages for improving family agricultural and financial practices.

Click here to read more about agricultural extension trials and about the background and development of these learning activities.