Strengthening the Centre of Excellence for Farmer Field Schools

This project aims to contribute to the improvement of rural livelihoods and to the increase of food and nutrition security in Egypt, by expanding and integrating the Farmer Field School approach in the overall rural development strategy.

Integration and up-scaling process

The Farmer Field Schools (FFS) programme is part of the long-term Strategy of Sustainable Agriculture Development applied by the Ministry of Agriculture & Land Reclamation (MALR). It is geared towards improving the standard of living of the rural inhabitants by increasing their skills and access to knowledge.

Because in Fayoum the FFS programme is aligned with the government strategy for the agricultural sector and has convincingly proven its effectiveness and popularity for over two decades, the Egyptian government decided to institutionalise and replicate the FFS approach in the other governorates also. The Fayoum Agricultural Department was asked  to take the lead in this integration and up-scaling process with support from the Fayoum FFS project through the establishment of a Centre of Excellence (CE).

With funding from NUFFIC and in collaboration with ICRA, VHL and the Fayoum University, CDI is providing support to the Centre of Excellence for FFS in Fayoum, building staff capacity in planning,  organization & evaluation, and launching FFS in Al-Minia and Beni-Suef.

Project and cross-cutting objectives

Overall objective: Integration and expansion of the FFS approach for rural development

Specific objective: A fully operational FFS Centre of Excellence introducing FFS programmes in their governorates, responding to the needs of the agricultural directorates

Cross-cutting objectives:

  • Gender is mainstreamed in all project interventions through implementation of a strategy aiming at gender equality in internal and external activities of the Centre of Excellence;
  • By developing the skills and competence of the FFS participants, self-employment in economically viable smallholdings is increased by improved on-farm and off-farm productivity.

Expected results

VHL, ICRA and Fayoum University focus on providing support to develop capacity in management, logistical organisational and research activities. CDI's role is to review and upgrade existing training practices and materials, as well as to design, elaborate and develop the methodological competence of the trainer staff. Moreover it comprises updating and complementing the content of the FFS modules and curricula in line with the actual training needs of farmers to acquire a decent income through agricultural production activities.