Agricultural Services Programme for Innovation, Resilience and Extension (ASPIRE) conducted a meeting chaired by H.E. Mam Am Not, program director. The purpose of the meeting was to review the progress of the program implementation and direction for moving forward.

During the meeting, each responsible person / consultant presented the progress of his/her assignment compared to the work plan. It was noticed that it is good that second Agricultural Extension Advisory Committee (AEAC) was organized and the guideline on roles and responsibilities for those who involved in agricultural extension is developed. In the meeting, Knowledge and ICT advisor raised about Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS) recently tested with farmers in the ASPIRE program’s target provinces. Calling from operator is more effective – at least 10% of the interviewed farmers responded and completed the interview with the operator. Meaning that IVRS might not work for this moment.

I myself presented collection and review of extension materials. In the first quarter of 2017, I have collected 580 extension materials, or it is accumulated that 1187 materials have been collected in total since I started working for ASPIRE from December 2016. A guideline on review and validation of extension materials was developed, factsheet was written, and a validation workshop to be held by end of April 2017.

In general, the programme has achieved good results. Most of the program activities have been implemented as (first quarter) work plan. However, the team also need to speed up the implementation of some activities such as Extension Hub, web portal, quality assurance of service providers, quality assurance of extension materials, etc.

For the coming months, the team is planning for more TOT training, workshops, Farmer Demand Assessment (FDA), etc. More agricultural extension materials will be published for small farmers, extension agents. This would help to improve farm production and productivity, at the same time, market linkage that is profitable for small farmers in target areas.