Postharvest Loss Prevention Training And Outreach Through The PHL Training Hub
In 2019-20, the Postharvest Loss Experimental Training Hub at Njala University (NU), Sierra Leone, was established with support from ADM Cares. Working in two districts and cooperating with two US-based NGOs, NU and the University of Illinois provided training directly through video extension materials and workshops to several hundred smallholder farmers.
In 2020-21, the NU and UIUC PHL Experimental Training Hub will expand its program to reach more farmers in new communities and reach more students through active engagement in activities, and connect with more NGO and private sector partners.
Planned activities include:
- A learning event/workshop at Njala University which will allow training of NGO staff, Ministry of Agriculture, private sector, university staff and students, and Farmer-Based Organization (FBO) staff, in postharvest loss prevention technologies and approaches. These approaches will include low-cost (including biomass and solar) dryers, moisture meters, hermetic bags, among others.
- A field program of outreach events in local villages through NGOs and FBOs to deliver video-based trainings, field demonstrations and storage trials to disseminate knowledge about improved storage and handling technologies.
- Engagement at Njala University with instructors and classes to incorporate PHL learning and experiences into the curriculum in the College of Agriculture and in the School of Technology.
This project continued the research partnership between the University of Illinois and Njala University on economic and social research related to the dissemination and adoption of postharvest-related technologies and approaches.
- Four SAWBO postharvest videos translated into local Krio language to be used in postharvest activities (linked below)
- Workshop at Njala University, April 2021: 30 people (18 men, 12 women)
- Njala/Illinois student postharvest activity, April 2021: 53 students (35 men, 18 women)
- Village-level trainings, December 2022: 25 people (12 men, 13 women)
In addition to the outcomes above, Njala and Illinois faculty members and staff are exploring future opportunities for collaboration.