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Plans are underway to increase the number of participants in the next ICT workshops IMAGE: Solomon Star
Honiara, Solomon Islands – Kastom Gaden Association has revealed most young farmers in parts of the Solomon Islands are not familiar with digital information and videos in the areas of ICT and Agriculture.
The revelation comes at the conclusion of the ICT trainings attended by young farmers.
“The results from the 2 ICT trainings conducted in Guadalcanal and Malaita have shown that there is a high percentage which do not use ICT when it comes to Agriculture,” says Pitakia Tikai of Kastom Gaden Association. “They didn’t know how to do simple things like using google search to look for videos and accessing digital information on agriculture.”
Pitakia Tikai said Kastom Gaden Association will increase the number of participants in the next ICT workshops and continue to organise them for farmers in other provinces of the Solomon Islands.
“There are a lot of digital illiterate farmers in our rural areas, 100% of the participants gave a high rating of 5/5 to the usefulness of the workshop.”
“ICT and farming must be promoted to youths in other provinces to attract them towards farming, it would also increase the productivity of farmers.”
Participants in Malaita training included youth farmers, Malaita provincial Extension Officers from the Ministry of Agriculture, Auki Market Vendors Association and a representative of Malaita Youth Council.
In Guadalcanal participants included members from Divit Rural Training Centre, Bethsheba Disability Training, Barana Nature Park, Honiara Lauru Youth, Suva Rural Training Centre, Maraghoto Farm, Popoloi Farm, Zai Na Tina Organic Farm and Guadalcanal Province Extension Service.
Pitakia Tikai said the training was conducted to understand the use of ICT in farming organisation, promoting the use of online information for farming, promoting the use of social media to advertise and share information, promote online marketing on Facebook Pages and help youths record data of farming produce on their mobile phones.
The ICT training was funded by the Farmers’ Organizations for Africa, Caribbean and Pacific – FO4ACP Programme, a joint partnership between the European Union, Africa Caribbean and Pacific (ACP), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Pacific Island Farmers Organisation Network (PIFON).