Considering the Global COVID-19 pandemic, at this juncture we would like to encourage all our community to closely follow government instructions in their countries and regions. Safety is the number one priority at this point in time. We do recognize the important task the agricultural sector currently has in keeping the locked-down populations supplied.

GFRAS continues to work remotely while following government recommendations, and is closely monitoring how the current outbreak will impact project implementation and RAS work across the globe, and has created a special section in the website with recommendations and initiatives linked to RAS and maintaining food availability for people under home quarantine so the pandemic is not aggravated by a food supply crises and/or a food price crises.

The 10th GFRAS Annual Meeting, focused on the "Role of RAS in Climate Change & Disaster Risk Management" took place at the Royalton Negril, Jamaica between 30 September and 3 October, 2019 and was organized back-to-back with the first General Assembly of GFRAS on October 4th, and the Steering Committee meeting on October 5-7.  The Annual Meeting was co-organized with the Caribbean Agricultural Extension Providers’ Network (CAEPNet); Jamaica’s Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture, and Fisheries (MICAF), and the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA). The final report of the meeting is now available, and brings forward the content of discussions and recommendations regarding Climate Change & Disaster Risk Management.

 

You can download it here:

GFRAS has a ten-year strategic framework (2016-2025) with three ‘strategic fields’ covering advocacy, professionalisation of rural advisory services and knowledge exchange among members and the wider community of actors in rural advisory services. The implementation of activities is framed by a five-year operational plan covering the period 2016-2020.
As the first period of the operational plan for the existing framework is nearing completion, GFRAS commissioned an external assessment of progress towards achieving its objectives. The assessment is also expected to identify lessons that can inform the preparation of the next five-year operational plan (2021-2025). The report of this assessment, as well as the recommendations it proposes, can be found here:

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                                                                                                                                        Alongside FAO’s Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia, GFRAS organized a blended learning programme on experience capitalization for continuous learning.

Already tested and validated, this blended learning programme consists of six modules and is offered through an interactive online course, lasting from February 7th to April 5th 2020. Each module has a workload of 2-3 hours.

Registered participants should have received a login information from FAO, and are kindly encouraged to start their modules and activities. Any registered participant who did not receive an e-mail is encouraged to check their Spam folders.

Several thematic areas will be discussed in the course, such as rural advisory services and extension, climate change, and digitalisation. The course languages are English and Russian.

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After a successful 10th edition in Jamaica, the 11th GFRAS Annual Meeting will take place from 4-7 October 2020 at the Baltic Beach Hotel in Jūrmala, Latvia. The meeting will discuss digitalisation trends in Rural Advisory Services and the role of digitalization in aiding information exchange and accessibility, as well as how digital service provision transforms  how RAS is thought of today. Registration will open in Spring 2020.

A call for hosts for the 2021 and 2022 Annual Meeting editions is available here. Interested organisations and networks are encouraged to submit their proposals until 29 February 2020. In line with its new operational plan, the discussions held in Jamaica, as well as in future Annual Meetings, will lead to the publication of Issue Papers, a publication series highlighting rural advisory services in important contemporary international development topics.