The project began in November 2018 supported by the Halcrow Foundation and will directly benefit 280 farmers. 30 Lead farmers will be trained, and 60 piglets procured and distributed. Through the multiplier effect the project is expected to benefit a minimum of 1,000 farmers indirectly, who will be engaged with Deep Bed Farming by the end of the two-year project period.

Tiyenis Field Officer, Timothy Moyo, is working in full collaboration with the Manyamula Extension Planning Area (EPA) Government Agriculture Office. The office is located at the EPA and Timothy has been given office space within the premises, courtesy of the Government staff and the good relationship that is well established with Tiyeni.

Sensitisation meetings

These meetings have continued in 4 sections. During the meetings Government Agriculutral staff and Timothy facilitated the identification of Lead farmers (30). Below is the list of sections and Lead farmers identified.

Table 1. List of sections and Lead farmers identified.

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30 Lead farmers are expected to be trained from the above sections and group village headmen. In these sections the Lead farmers are going to create demonstration plots in their own gardens.

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The District Land Resource and Crop Officer from Mzimba South District Agriculture Office (DAO) and the Government Agricultural Officers and Co-ordinators from the Extension Planning are involved and engaged with the training of Lead farmers. A community-based action plan is being created during training to help Lead farmers to monitor their activities diligently.

Lead farmer training

In March 2019 Tiyeni’s Monitoring & Evaluation Officer, Training Manager and Timothy Moyo conducted training of 30 lead farmers. The training was carried out successfully with all involved, including 2 Officers from Mzimba DAO facilitating different topics in turns.

The M&E Officer facilitated the theory of the Decentralized Demonstration Gardens extension method (DDGEM). After theory in class the Lead farmers conducted a day-long practical session on making marker ridges, tilling, bed making manure application and planting. Below are photos of trainees during the practical sessions.

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