Report of a workshop on participatory approaches in agricultural extension, Dedza, Malawi, November 2012
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R. Chikowo, Krista Isaacs, Sieglinde Snapp. (30/11/2012). Report of a workshop on participatory approaches in agricultural extension, Dedza, Malawi, November 2012. Ibadan, Nigeria: International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA).
A participatory learning workshop was held in Dedza between 6-10 November 2012, involving 40 participants from Dedza, Ntcheu, Muchinji and Lilongwe districts, all within the INVC target districts. Workshop participants were taken through participatory approaches that are critical in the development of trust with communities, leading to successful implementation of research or development projects. True community participation in initiatives leads to local ownership and higher chances of success and sustainable development. Participants were exposed to principles of facilitation and got to practice in smaller groups and plenary. Principles of agro-ecology and agronomy were presented and discussed with participants, including presentation of case studies by participants from the different districts. The workshop struck a balance between providing information and tools for people to carry out participatory action research and incorporating the participatory process into the workshop framework, thus co-creating with the participants the local meaning of participation and participatory research. Various facilitation tools were used by the core facilitators, while participants had numerous role play facilitation opportunities, including a real life situation interacting with a smallholder farming community in Dedza