A team of national innovation facilitators is now established in Bangladesh, after 16 facilitators were trained in October. These facilitators will now implement the capacity needs assessment of the innovation partnerships and niches that CDAIS works on in Bangladesh. Initially the focus will be on the mango, tomato and poultry sectors.
The newly trained facilitators are enthusiastic about the training: “It was an excellent process; personally I will apply in my workplace and in work as a facilitator,” said one. Another participant believes that the training gave her the tools to make a real impact: “This will be very important for my region. I hope it brings positive changes in livelihoods and is good for the nation”.
The 16 facilitators come from a variety of organizations and professional backgrounds: researchers, extensionists, NGO staff, government officers and trainers. During their training at the Bangladesh Academy for Rural Development in Comilla, Eastern Bangladesh, the trainers got concrete tools and processes to conduct the needs assessment.
Claire Coote, Agrinatura focal person, and Nasreen Sultana, CDAIS Country Manager for Bangladesh, led the interactive and highly participative three-and-a-half day course. They introduced the participants to the concept of agricultural innovation systems and the need for capacity development to address functional capacities – the mainly soft skills required to enable and empower the implementation of technical improvements. The training aimed to create a shared understanding of concepts, strengthen hands-on capacity to use different capacity needs assessment tools and share a common understanding and consensus of the planned activities for the capacity needs assessment.