To address the need to capacitate extension personnel to support more efficient and effective delivery of agricultural services to the grassroots, the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) conducted a series of training on extension delivery system for extension service providers from attached agencies and bureaus of the Department of Agriculture (DA).
Four FPA employees attended the training course namely JonsieBaysa, Information Officer II (PMID), Edward Calapatia, Agriculturist II (FOCU), Ivan Layag, Information Officer III (PMID), and Wilbert Newton Pollisco, Senior Agriculturist (FOCU).
The training aimed to equip the participants with working knowledge, skills, and attitude to become effective extension service providers especially in adapting to change, overcoming resistance, and adopting innovations.
The enabling objectives included discussion of the basics of Agricultural Extension (AE); description of the clients of extension; explanation of the different approaches, strategies, and methods; and, demonstration of the effective communication skills in extension. Ultimately, this training aimed for the participants to apply the different concepts of AE in their respective workplaces.
The training, which was delivered through a combination of lecture/discussions, group exercises, and plenary sessions, covered the modules on Basics of Agricultural Extension, Agricultural Extension Approaches, Methods, and Strategies, and Communication in Extension.
Dr. Rowena D.T. Baconguis, a professor from the UP Los Banos- College of Agriculture (UPLB-CA) and Ms. Antonieta J. Arceo, Chief of the ATI Information Services Division (ATI-ISD), served as resource persons.
“Though the application of AE is indirectly related to the function of FPA as a regulatory agency, the learnings acquired with this training will be most applicable with the daily interactions and provision of services of the participants with their stakeholders,” said the FPA participants.
Further, they said that FPA has an integral role in making these differences and solutions to FPA’s main stakeholders – the farmers, with the Agency’s continued Information, Education and Communication (IEC) Campaign, and capacitation through conduct of different trainings and symposia on the safe and judicious use of agricultural inputs on a national level.
The participants recommended that the training be reechoed to the FPA Regional Field Units (RFUs) with their regular IEC campaigns/extension work. A more innovative version of the training, that would fit the needs of RFUs and FPA as a regulatory agency, should be conducted with which ATI is willing to provide resource speakers. Additionally, the RFUs should be capacitated on training management for the efficient delivery of FPA’s mandates.