The activity of training and unification of guidelines was attended by all the IWM collaborators of Caldas, Cauca, Antioquia, Nariño, and Valle, and the central-level team of specialists.
• The training strategy for coffee-farming families that take part in the IWM Program was achieved thanks to the formidable work of a team of experts of the Manuel Mejía Foundation, Cenicafé and the Colombian Coffee Growers Federation (FNC).
A week of training on the multilevel training strategy to all extension team members of the Manos al Agua-Intelligent Water Management (IWM) Program took place from February 8 to 13, 2016, in the Manuel Mejía Foundation, in Chinchiná, Caldas. It aimed at strengthening competencies of the IWM Extension team to address the process of training of coffee-growing families involved with the Program.
More than 45 employees received the training modules and ludic materials developed with a pedagogical approach to strengthen the extensionists’ work in such topics as forest and soil management, good agricultural practices, ecological wet milling, and coffee wastewater management on the farm, as well as training on gender equity, among others.
Amid these activities, it was possible to study the modules and learn how to manage the ludic tools developed exclusively for each topic. All the team members analyzed the training goals defined for Years 3 to 5 of the Program, and planning mechanisms with their respective schedules were generated as a roadmap to implementation and development of the training activities defined.
As inauguration of the event, balloons were launched into the sky in a symbolic way, and all members of Manos al Agua-IWM wrote their commitments from now on to each of the multilevel training plans.
Jaime Baena, IWM coordinator in Caldas, said, “These spaces for integration of strategies, leadership, and training are very valuable for all the IWM members to be aligned on a single path towards the Program’s goals and purposes.”
The objective of training promoted by the Multilevel Training Plan of the Program is a strategy that seeks to update knowledge, build skills for doing increasingly complex and responsible tasks, and thus improve and strengthen personal skills, making of work a source of learning.
“In these updating and training activities we are able to clarify many doubts about implementation in the field and contribute to a coffee sector of greater quality and well-being for all the families,” said Carolina Herrera, IWM extensionist in Nariño.
Mary Lia, extensionist of Cauca, said that “It’s important to spread knowledge, meet the other colleagues, and know that we all work with a shared vision to achieve an intelligent water management.”
The social work team sees implementation of the gender course as a challenge, as it uses an innovative methodology that defies what has been done until now, with a different approach on equitable gender relations and human rights.
All that was learned and taught in this training week represents a great progress in implementation of methodologies in the field, seeking to promote excellence in execution of intelligent water management as a mechanism to strengthen the extensionists’ work to achieve appropriation and adoption by coffee-growing families.