Sustainable and Regenerative Agriculture
Aiming to empower smallholder farmers and their communities to achieve economic self-reliance using high production and environmentally sustainable food production systems, the course provides ecological land-use design competencies and sustainable life and business skills. Course modules are based on a combination of theory and practice, and include global and national trends in agroecology and sustainable agriculture, principles and concepts of agroecology, the science of sustainable agriculture, building resilience to climate change, biodiversity, multi-cropping and inter-cropping, insect and pest management, soil fertility, rehabilitation, and erosion control, energy efficiency, water conservation, waste treatment, livestock integration, ecosystem restoration, and agroforestry. Participants re-design their farms based on agroecological principles in the final project.
The course offers a combination of in-depth knowledge on topics offered in the Sustainable Agriculture course with hands-on experience, design and implementation in participants’ production systems. The course includes a series of workshops aimed at preparing participants to implement and manage sustainable agricultural systems projects based on the Sustainable Agriculture course modules with additional techniques to improve existing practices on the ground (e.g., installing and optimally using drip irrigation systems, best ecological practices for specific crops, shading techniques, weeding, building and operating green houses, planning sowing and planting for year-long yields, best practices for growing crops in arid climates, data collection methodologies, composting, use of green manure, seed cycle management, seed enhancement). Participants learn and practice throughout the course how to transfer their knowledge to trainees from their communities.