Talking to Africa Gateway about how we can roll out our smallholder training to address climate change

Dr Rosalind Cornforth from Reading University is a Research Fellow at the Walker Institute for Climate System Research. With the support of the Rockefeller Foundation, the Institute is establishing 8 climate change units in Africa, to provide training to rural farming communities and build their resilience to climate change.  The units will be in Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, and some West African countries.

Rosalind is involved in developing the Africa Gateway Exchange, an initiative for knowledge exchange (also using a web platform). Its aim is to make sure African climate science research outputs science relevant for decision-making both at the community level and further up the climate science and policy chain.

She mentioned that that it has been really difficult to move the science on climate change out to grassroot level and this is why she was interested in our project and work with Ambo University and NTTI. There is a lot of EU momentum on distance learning platform education courses, supporting local African universities and Partners for distance learning in Africa. Distance learning education programmes is something that they are hoping to develop.  They would like to create an online module that anyone can register on and use, to build awareness of met data and to understand it. I’ve forwarded links for the Center for Sustainable Development, who have online courses run by Tim Magee. Their programmes look excellent, but I still need to register with them to trial these out personally.

Rosalind also mentioned the Institute of Physics and their campaign on Africa, weather and environment education. This programme targets primary and secondary school level children – There may be a possibility to provide basic weather environment information one step before the climate change issues.

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