Train the Trainer: a holistic approach to Integrated Resource Management and Grassland Revitalization

Project Overview

ES04-073
Project Type: Professional Development Program
Funds awarded in 2004: $93,908.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2006
Region: Southern
State: Mississippi
Principal Investigator:
Charles Flowers
Mississippi State University Extension Service
Co-Investigators:
Jane Parish
Mississippi State University Extension Service

Annual Reports

Commodities

  • Agronomic: cotton, peanuts, potatoes, rice, soybeans, sugarcane, grass (misc. perennial), hay
  • Additional Plants: native plants
  • Animals: bovine

Practices

  • Animal Production: feed/forage, feed formulation, feed rations, mineral supplements, grazing - multispecies, pasture fertility, pasture renovation, preventive practices, range improvement, grazing - rotational, housing, stockpiled forages, vaccines, watering systems, winter forage
  • Education and Training: decision support system, demonstration, extension, farmer to farmer, focus group, networking
  • Farm Business Management: whole farm planning, new enterprise development, budgets/cost and returns, cooperatives, marketing management, feasibility study, agricultural finance, market study, risk management, value added
  • Natural Resources/Environment: habitat enhancement, riparian buffers, riverbank protection, soil stabilization, wildlife
  • Production Systems: holistic management, integrated crop and livestock systems
  • Soil Management: nutrient mineralization, soil quality/health
  • Sustainable Communities: social networks, sustainability measures

    Abstract:

    The trainer the trainer concept exceeded expectations in the Mississippi beef and forage focused project. Livestock/ forage specialists, area agents, and county directors from the Mississippi State University Extension Service, staff from the Natural Resources Conservation Service, veterinarians, and numerous other leaders and educators in the Mississippi beef and forage industries gained valuable information via the train the trainer program on a large selection of topics. Program efforts included educational information via face-to-face training sessions, field days, short courses, Extension and popular press articles, PowerPoint presentations, interactive video-based distance education, radio, news releases, e-mail, and the Internet: http://msucares.com/livestock/beef/. Topics addressed included cattle reproduction, end product, marketing, nutrition, forage production and utilization, NRCS programs, herd health, and genetics. Multi-county local groups or sustainable beef teams developed and continue to thrive throughout Mississippi as “Cattlemen’s Exchange groups”, which now appear to be sustainable as long-term producer education resources. These groups interactive locally and across groups on a regular (usually monthly) basis and share research and production information. Program awareness continues to expand in Mississippi and attract new participants in Mississippi and surrounding states. Regional educational programming efforts developed as a result of the project among Mississippi, Alabama, and Louisiana beef and forage production educational programs. Program evaluations were very positive and continue to provide good input for future program planning. Long-term beef and forage educational efforts have a solid foundation of educational materials, methods, and trainer resources that will sustain impacts well beyond the funded life of the project.

    Project objectives:

    2004
    1) Recruit participants for sustainable beef teams.
    2) Conduct seminars and workshops on a variety of relevant production and marketing topics for sustainable beef teams.
    3) Develop educational materials to support training efforts for sustainable beef teams.

    2005
    1) Continue active participation in sustainable beef teams.
    2) Continue conducting seminars, workshops, and short courses on a variety of relevant beef cattle and forage production and marketing topics for sustainable beef teams.
    3) Continue Development of training materials specific to training program to enhance trainers’ and producers’ knowledge base.
    4) Continue to support local training team efforts to educate local producers on beef cattle and forage topics.

    2006
    1) Continue active participation in sustainable beef teams.
    2) Continue conducting seminars, workshops, and short courses on a variety of relevant beef cattle and forage production and marketing topics for sustainable beef teams.
    3) Continue development of training materials specific to training program to enhance trainers’ and producers’ knowledge base.
    4) Continue to support local training team efforts to educate local producers on beef cattle and forage topics.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.