Orwada Integrated Farmers (OIF) was founded in 2017, in Uganda-East Africa. Both rural and urban farmers generally accept that agricultural development depends on integrating farmers, agricultural extension officers and researchers. This integration creates beneficial approaches to all involved parties. However, many indigenous farm practices are being maintained and expanded by farmers. The challenge is, that many of these farmers are reluctant to adopt and improve their farming methods and techniques and increase food production and soil fertility, among others. All farmers are making a living from their farm land.
Farmers, however, are resourceful to make significant contribution in agricultural development, but many of them have not had opportunities to learn what works and what doesn’t before they commit to a particular farming strategy. With growing population pressure and growing awareness of environmental degradation, farmers are seeking more productive approaches to use scarce, but available resources without depleting them. There is a need for farmers to follow the trainings and acquire necessary knowledge and skills to adjust and to ably apply the farming methods and techniques productively to do farming.
However, farmers are stuck and not able to increase food production and ensure food security. And, yet it is important to do so and reduce poverty and avoid famine as well as increase their incomes at household levels in Eastern-Region. Farmers need to build partnerships and demonstrate their willingness and commitment to learn more by using participatory approaches and marketing their produce through the cooperatives. In fact, farmers need to be integrated.
Even while small-scale farmers are in the process of trying various approaches such as intercropping; crops, trees, vegetables and fruits, they need technical support and assistance through training. Knowledge is a powerful farmers’ asset. The acquisition of specific knowledge and skills helps farmers to increase food productivity. It helps them to use knowledge in all its forms to create added value to their produce, increase sales and their incomes at household levels.
However, many small-scale farmers lack knowledge and skills to improve more results of their land. Training helps farmers to acquire new ideas, knowledge and skills in farming practices and policies. This enables them to play a key role to increase food production and food security and value addition to their produce.
Both rural and urban farmers lack knowledge in modern technology, such as greenhouses technology and improving soil fertility, among others. Farmers need to sustain agriculture and farmers must, therefore, become capable, actively and continuously involved in farming and to improve farming of crops on their land.