For more than 30 years, agriculture extension agents, farmers, homemakers, and students have benefited from the U.S. Land Grant system and the Western Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) professional development and capacity building in the three island nations in Micronesia, namely Federated States of Micronesia, FSM; Republic of Palau, Palau; and Republic of the Marshall Islands, Marshall Islands. The College of Micronesia, Land Grant Program, serves the 3 island nations considered, for the purpose of USDA NIFA, Micronesia is considered a state protectorate and receives the same level of SARE funding as Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands. Micronesia is geographically isolated and is scattered over a large area of the Pacific, an area larger than the United States Mainland. Transportation and communications are significantly expensive and barriers to development because it is always difficult and challenging to coordinate any SARE training activities on all 6 major islands (counties). This project will utilize to some extent a recently trained SARE Liaisons located on some of the islands. The Liaison will assist the PI and Cooperator both who will travel to the islands to conduct training and collect information to be developed into reports, references, posters, etc. for future use and for submission to SARE.
Relevance to Western
Project objectives from proposal:
There are two main objectives of this project:
- To increase knowledge-base and skills of 30 to 50 individuals at each training sites including, agriculture extension agents, liaisons, farmers and gardeners, and students at each the 3 taring sites. Participants will increase awareness in environmentally friendly gardening methods.
- To empower 2 extension agents and a liaisons to train other stakeholders in their communities the practices they have learned. This is expected to be accomplished in the 3rd and the 4th quarters of the project.