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ARIFA fellows commence classes

The first cohort of trainees under the Agricultural Research and Innovation Fellowship for Africa (ARIFA), coordinated by the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa-FARA in partnership with the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) and the Universidade Federal de Viçosa (UFV) in Brazil, commenced classes at designated Virtual Training and Innovation Hubs (VTrain Hubs) in Nigeria today 9th November, 2020.

These trainees comprise the first of 120 ARIFA fellows, who will be engaged across 6 learning centers located in TETFunds’ Centers of Excellence in Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi, University of Benin, University of Maiduguri, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, University of Jos and University of Lagos. The virtual lectures are delivered from various agriculture-related departments in UFV, Brazil.

Under the programme, ARIFA fellows, drawn from among the academic staff of TETFund’s beneficiary institutions, will be trained at MSc. level, to contribute to the vision of creating the next generation of Agricultural Research for Development (AR4D) practitioners for the continent. The initiative forms part of the TETFund-FARA Pedagogic Retooling Strategy of supporting Nigeria’s tertiary institutions to conduct research within the context of innovation to impact pathway.

In August 2020, FARA and TETFund launched the strategy with the establishment of a Steering Committee for the implementation of ARIFA. Today’s commencement of lectures by the ARIFA fellows represents an important milestone in the operationalization of the programme.

The current cohort has to commence the program online due to the ongoing COVID-19-related travel restrictions. It is expected that this online classes which will go on until the end of the year, and will be followed by in-person lectures that will start in the first quarter of 2021 in Brazil, when all the ARIFA fellows will be mobilized to the city of Viçosa. It is also expected that more fellows will be selected to join the programme.

ARIFA is part of FARA’s wider strategy of the South-South & Triangular Cooperation (SSTC) known as the Holistic Empowerment for Livelihood Programme (HELP).

For more details contact: Dr. Abdulrazak Ibrahim [email protected]

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