Twenty-seven veterinary officers and animal health workers in Sikasso, Mopti and Timbuktu in Mali have acquired new skills in managing endemic livestock diseases after taking part in a training of trainers workshop led by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) and other partners in the country.
The workshop, a Feed the Future Mali Livestock Technology Scaling (MLTS) program activity, was held 21-30 November 2016 in Koutiala, Sikasso. It focused on the management, through vaccination, of livestock diseases such as contagious bovine pleuropneumonia, peste des petits ruminants and bovine and ovine pasteurellosis.
Participants were also trained on the management of internal and external parasites and use of veterinary drugs and laws governing veterinary practice in Mali. Other topics covered in the workshop included hygiene and best practices in milk handling at the farm, and best practices in housing and managing small ruminants.
Most of the participants in the 10-day workshop had basic knowledge in animal health and production; and included private veterinarians carrying out mass vaccinations against endemic livestock diseases in the country.
Lectures, group discussions, simulations, role plays of participatory training and field demonstrations were used in the workshop and the participants are expected to use skills gained to train other farmers in selected communes targeted by the MLTS program.
The United States Agency for International Development-funded Feed the Future MLTS program is working with farmers and other value chain actors to increase their income, food and nutrition security from cattle, sheep, and goat farming in Mopti, Timbuktu and Sikasso regions of Mali. The program’s main goal is to improve livestock overall productivity and to enhance the volume and value of livestock products produced and marketed in these regions by promoting wide-scale adoption of appropriate livestock technologies.
The program is working with community-based animal health workers in enhancing animal health delivery systems and best health interventions that reduce disease burden in livestock, increasing availability of quality feed biomass both at household and regional levels, and improving feed utilization and husbandry practices. These efforts are also leveraging other USAID-led livestock market development initiatives in the country.
MLTS targets to train 2000 farmers in 2016 and 4000 per year in subsequent years. Follow up activities will be put in place to strengthen replication models and ensure maximum benefits and sustainable results from the training sessions. Model farmers who adopt technologies will also be identified and followed up; and community animal health platforms are expected to play a capital role in supporting the program’s capacity building efforts.
Download the MLTS program factsheet.
By Michel Dione, animal health scientist at ILRI
Editing by Paul Karaimu