The Mastercard scholarship has left a positive impact in my life


By Francisca Muteti Ndinda

My name is Francisca Muteti Ndinda, a second-year student at Gulu University. I’m pursuing a Master of Science in Agri Enterprises Development. Being a beneficiary of the scholarship under the MasterCard Foundation has not only transformed my life, it has also improved the lives of many around me.

Before joining the programme, I used to struggle financially, to take care of my parents and also pay tuition for my niece. But with the monthly stipend that started coming in from the scholarship, my life situation has significantly improved for the better. In addition, I have helped my sister enroll to a fashion and design school that she recently completed and is now able to take care of herself financially. I strongly believe that ensuring my family has access to education opportunities will help in creating a better future for them and the community at large.

Coming from a region with great potential for fruit production, in 2019 I started a project to grow the Hass variety of avocado and tree tomatoes tree.

Figure 1: Hass variety of avocado
Figure 2: TTree Tomatoes

However, the project did not succeed as the monitoring was not poor. I then decided to put it on hold as I thought through other opportunities I could take advantage of. However, the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted most services, including schools, which has also forced me to put my plans business plans on hold.

On a positive note though, I have used the period of being out of school to acquire new skills through the various online courses and trainings that I have been participating in. For instance, I am now familiar with different software for data analysis, which is a great asset for my career as a researcher. More so, the lockdown period has given me ample time to perfect and complete my thesis. I can confidently say that this has been a very productive period, as it has helped me discover more potential that I possibly could not have realized in a normal setting.

To sum it up, the MasterCard Foundation has had a significant impact to many– both directly and indirectly. As a direct beneficiary, I am forever grateful to the Foundation for the generous support.

Transforming Higher Education Videos and Links


Knowledge Sharing: Training Videos

Community Engagement.

Video Series developed by Julieta Mazzola, EARTH University.

English

  1. What is Community Engagement?  Video 1 of 3.  https://youtu.be/etv2-W1U3O0
  2. Different Forms of University Engagement with the Community. Video 2 of 3. https://youtu.be/73h2p8P0BLw
  3. Student learning through Community Engagement. Video 3 of 3. https://youtu.be/Ule3P1-tjC4

Español

  1. ¿Qué es compromiso comunitario? Video 1 de 3. https://youtu.be/73h2p8P0BLw
  2. Diferentes Formas de Compromiso de la Universidad con la Comunidad. Video 2 de 3. https://youtu.be/vJBiEL6Uu2s
  3. El aprendizaje de los estudiantes a través de las actividades de compromiso comunitario. Video 3/3.  https://youtu.be/u7Re9X4KbGo

Entrepreneurial Education

Video Series developed by Irene Alvarado, EARTH University.

English

  1. Why Entrepreneurial Education as Integral Component of University Education in Agriculture. Video 1 of 3. https://youtu.be/DvjlfiWzKOI
  2. Basic Competencies and Skills Needed for an Entrepreneurial Education in Agriculture. Video 2 of 3.  https://youtu.be/XC_FOB08bEU
  3. Alternative Methodologies and Models of Entrepreneurial Education.  Video 3A of 3. https://youtu.be/vdmlEwwJ2hY
  4. Alternative Methodologies and Models of Entrepreneurial Education.  Video 3B of 3. https://youtu.be/iegrnxj7Vz8

Español

  1. ¿Por qué la educación empresarial debe integrar a la educación de la agricultura? Video 1 de 3.  https://youtu.be/j0uJ-UCi6l8
  2. Competencias básicas y habilidades de una educación emprendedora en la agricultura: video 2 de 3.  https://youtu.be/jYzhkinLyYs
  3. Metodologías y modelos alternativos de educación emprendedora: Video 3A de 3. https://youtu.be/bZ881cZVxy4
  4. Metodologías y modelos alternativos de educación emprendedora: Video 3B de 3. https://youtu.be/KK5tl4QwIFM

Experiential Learning

  1. Saouma Boujaoude, Theoretical Foundations and Objectives of Experiential Learning. This is under development at this time.

Values and Ethical Leadership

  1. The role of universities in producing ethical leaders. Jose Zaglul.  Presentation given at the10th GCHERA Conference, Nanjing University, Nanjing China, 28th of October, 2019.  https://youtu.be/lv9i_UUEtls

[Press Release] RUFORUM Recognizes Malawian Higher Education Champion


The Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM), a network of 129 African universities operating in 38 countries across Africa has created impact across the continent due to the contributions from several individuals, Institutions and Members. According to the meeting held in 2007 at Maputo, Mozambique, the RUFORUM Vice Chancellors decided that RUFORUM should recognize individuals who have made significant contribution towards Higher Education in Africa. Yesterday, 1st June 2021, RUFORUM recognized the contribution of a higher education champion from Malawi, His Excellency Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera, the President of the Republic of Malawi. The function was preceded by the signing of the RUFORUM Charter by the Government of the Republic of Malawi.

The function was held at Lilongwe, MALAWI and a number of peoples attended that included, among others, HE Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera, President of the Republic of Malawi, the Minister of Education, Honourable Agnes Makonda NyaLonje, Minister of Agriculture, Honourable Lobin Lowe, MP, Secretary for Education Mrs. Chikondano Mussa, the Secretary for Agriculture, Mrs. Erica Maganga, and other Government Officials, Ambassadors, University Vice-Chancellors from Malawi and other parts of Africa, University Council Chairpersons, Deputy Vice-Chancellors, Registrars and Directors, Prof Adipala Ekwamu, Executive Secretary of RUFORUM and the RUFORUM Board Chair Prof. George Yobe Kanyama- Phiri. His Excellency Dr.  Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera called for greater engagement of Africa Universities in Africa’s development processes and also urged the Universities to work closely with private, public, and other partners to develop the requisite human capital, produce and disseminate appropriate technologies, and generate the required knowledge in order to support sound policies and economic development for a prosperous population where ‘no one is left behind

HE Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera has actively participated in politics including as a Member of Malawi Parliament, where he promoted understanding and working together of various political groups. He joined mainstream politics in 2014 and contested for the Presidential position on the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) Ticket. HE Dr Chakwera won a parliamentary seat and became the Leader of Opposition in Parliament. On 23rd June 2020 Chakwera was elected President of the Republic of Malawi. He has spared no time to put in place programmes whose impacts are already visible on the Malawi economy, respecting the rule of law, and putting access to education at the core of the Malawi Government’s development agenda. President Chakwera is leading several initiatives to mobilize African Governments and development partners to invest in Africa’s Higher education, as the fulcrum for development in Africa.

RUFORUM recognizes His Excellency Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera, President of Malawi, for his exemplary leadership, contribution to social inclusion, and for Championing Education, Science, Technology and Innovation advancement in Africa.

In the remarks during the event at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe, Malawi, Chakwera described the pIn the remarks during the event at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe, Malawi, H.E. Dr. Chakwera described the position as both humbling and demanding saying it means he even has to work harder to promote and support Higher Education in the Continent.

Contacts: Name: Evaline Acan; Communications Assistant ; Email: communications@ruforum.org

I rear sheep to boost my family income


By Simon Kabugi Mbogo

I am a third-year student at Egerton University in Kenya, pursuing a bachelors’ degree in Education. I believe in the saying that education is the key to success and an enhancer of personal awareness and growth.

I enrolled at Egerton University in September 2017, having endured many challenges such as raising school fees, especially during my first year of enrolment. However, as I could not raise the required tuition, I decided to defer my programme to another year.

In 2019 after attending an agricultural forum at the university, I got to know about the TAGDev project and decided to apply for a scholarship. I was lucky to have been given the scholarship to continue with my studies. Through this scholarship, I have been able to receive skills training, including computer literacy training.

The stipend has also enabled me to meet my personal expenses while investing some in income generating enterprises. Currently, I rear sheep. But I have also been helping my family financially especially since the lockdown has had a negative impact on all of us.

With the internet bundles extended to us, I have managed to undertake short online courses while at the same time taking part in TAGDev meetings. These engagements are educative and informative. Because one of the core pillars of TAGDev is enhancing leadership skills, I have been an active participant in community development initiatives while at home including tree planting at one of the local primary schools and a polytechnic institute.

I am grateful to RUFORUM and the Mastercard Foundation for the generous support. I hope to use the knowledge I am acquiring now to lead others, while at the same time helping those in need. 

I started a boutique during lockdown


By Sarah Kizza

Through the financial support given to me by RUFORUM, I was able to start piggery farming last year. Although I started with two female pigs, recently one of them gave birth to five piglets. The second one is still pregnant. I have also been able to buy additional two piglets and one exotic boar.

Besides rearing pigs, I teamed up with a friend to start a boutique that sells second-hand clothes for both men and women.

I also work as a supervisor in a company called NILEPLY, which producers different products including plywood boards, wooden ceiling materials among others.

I am grateful for the academic and financial support provided to me by RUFORUM through the TAGDev Project.   

My Cake baking passion is now a thriving business


By Ngwenchi Marilyn Goreh

As a Cameroonian studying in Uganda, I have been undertaking a number of initiatives back home and in Uganda, and specifically in Gulu.

In Cameroon, although I haven’t been engaged in a personal project, I offer financial support to my family. For instance, I pay for the cost of dialysis for my sister to ease the burden for my parents. My mum on the other hand runs a charcoal selling business, and my dad a firewood and kerosene business which I have both supported financially.

Before I got the scholarship, my sister and I were running a small business baking cakes and other pastries. When we started, the business had no name and was not organized as we had no business plan. But in the past several months, a lot has happened with the business thanks to the numerous training I have undertaken both online and offline under RUFORUM.  These trainings have not only provided me with knowledge, we have been able to develop a strategy for running the business. 

We have also been engaged in farming growing vegetables like onions and tomatoes. However, the farm has faced several challenges, including pests and diseases. We managed to combat and control the pests by making our own organic insect spray using ingredients such as neem leaves, red chili, aloe Vera and dishwashing soap. The unpredictable climate also continues to affect the crops. Sometimes the rains are in excess while other times the sun is too much, which makes it difficult for the crops to grow to their maximum size.   

With the setting in of the dry season and the anticipated harsh sunny days, we hope to construct a green house, which will help shield and protect the crops from the excess sun and pests.

Besides all these, and as the lock-down continues, I do everything possible to keep myself busy with my course work. Given that some lecturers had given out their course outline, I do research on the topics which had not been taught yet. These courses include Biochemistry (feeder pathway and glycolysis), Entomology (different systems of insects), Macro-Economics (Taxation). I also endeavour to attend all online webinars and training organized by RUFORUM. In Gulu, I spent the period of the COVID-19 lockdown learning how to make different crafts. I have also been working with Nic’s Organic Urban Farm, which is located close to the Gulu University main campus. On the farm, we grow vegetables such as tomatoes, spinach, onions, and green pepper. The harvest is sold to the local community. I am grateful to the Mastercard Foundation for giving me this opportunity and making me able to realize my dreams. 

I sell eggs in my community


By Amos Anyiego Bikwendo

I am a student pursuing an undergraduate degree in Education at Egerton University, Kenya. My vision is to become a transformational leader and entrepreneur. I hope to create jobs that can lead to sustainable livelihoods for youth.

Currently, I run a poultry project and supply eggs within the community. Despite having few hens, the project is running well and I hope to stock more birds in the near future. On top of selling eggs, I use the chicken droppings as a source of manure for my vegetable garden.

In the future, I hope I can be able to supply large amounts of eggs and also own a hatchery machine. This would create job opportunities for young people and improve their economic status. At the moment though, my biggest challenge is the small rearing space that I have for the chicken project. Buying feeds for the chicken is also an expensive venture, which has made it hard to increase stock beyond what I already have. 

[Press Release] RUFORUM Hosts African Government Technical Experts


Kampala – 28 May 2021, The Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) hosted a virtual dialogue for Africa Government Technical Experts towards the UN Food Systems Summit 2021 under the theme “Transforming food systems is crucial for delivering all the Sustainable Development Goals”. Ten (10) African countries (Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe) participated in the Dialogue.

Universities in the Network as well as the policy makers recognize the interconnectedness between science and policy; the potential for universities to impact on innovations in the agri-food system sector; and the ability to harness the youth dividend and strengthen opportunities for agri-prenuership that will influence Africa’s attainment of the SDG targets. RUFORUM a Network of 129 universities in 38 African countries, reached out to Technical Experts in Africa for the dialogue to discuss the UN Food System Summit, agree on the key steps to be taken and the key messages to be shared with the Government Ministers for consideration towards the Food System Summit and to generate solutions and actions to inform not only the deliberations during the Food Summit but as an opportunity to advance high priority food systems with commitment at the highest national, regional and continent policy levels.

The meeting with the Technical Experts on 27th May 2021 followed a series of national and sub-regional dialogues (for Central, Eastern, Southern and West Africa) that RUFORUM organized jointly with Member State Governments and other actors so as to garner collective understanding of the issues and actions needed to strengthen Food Systems in Africa. The convening for North Africa and Middle East is slated for 10 June 2021. Prior to that RUFORUM will be hosting two global events, a convening for Global Youth on 01 June 2021, and a Convening for Global Higher Education, Research and Advisory Services Networks on 2nd June 2021. The outcomes of these deliberations will be presented to a meeting of Africa’s Ministers of Agriculture, Education and Science, Technology and innovation, who will then present their recommendations to African Heads of State and Government, and subsequently to the UN Food Systems Summit in October 2021.
According to Prof Adipala Ekwamu, RUFORUM Executive Secretary and one of the 100 persons appointed by the United Nations to champion the UN Food Systems Summit, the ongoing Dialogues provide opportunities for Universities and other actors to engage with the Governments and Global community towards needed actions towards ending hunger and malnutrition and developing more resilient, inclusive and climate –compatible agriculture and food systems.

Contacts: Name: Evaline Acan; Communications Assistant; Email: communications@ruforum.org

[Communiqué de Presse] RUFORUM Accueille des Experts Techniques du Gouvernement Africain


Kampala – 28 mai 2021, le Forum Régional des Universités pour le Renforcement des Capacités en  Agriculture  (RUFORUM)  a  organisé  un  dialogue  virtuel  pour  les  experts  techniques  des Gouvernements Africains en vue du Sommet des Nations Unies sur les Systèmes Alimentaires de 2021  sous  le  thème  «La  transformation  des  systèmes  alimentaires  est  cruciale  pour  atteindre tous les objectifs de développement durable ». Dix (10) pays Africains (Le Burundi, la République Démocratique du Congo, le Kenya, Mozambique, la Namibie, la Somalie, Soudan, l’Ouganda, la Zambie et le Zimbabwe) ont participé au Dialogue.

Les  universités  du  réseau  ainsi  que  les  décideurs  politiques  reconnaissent  l’interdépendance entre la science et la politique; le potentiel des universités à influer sur les innovations dans le secteur  du  système  agroalimentaire;  et  la  capacité  d’exploiter  le  dividende  des  jeunes  et  de renforcer les opportunités agro-industrielles qui influenceront la réalisation des cibles des ODD par l’Afrique. RUFORUM,  un  réseau de 129 universités dans 38 pays Africains, a contacté des experts techniques en Afrique pour le dialogue afin de discuter du Sommet des Nations Unies sur le Système Alimentaire, identifier les mesures clés à prendre et des messages clés à partager avec les Ministres des gouvernements pour examen durant le Sommet sur le système alimentaire et pour  générer  des  solutions  et  des  actions  pour  éclairer  non  seulement  les  délibérations  du Sommet sur l’alimentation, mais aussi comme une opportunité de faire progresser les systèmes alimentaires hautement prioritaires avec un engagement aux plus hauts niveaux des politiques nationaux, régionaux et continentaux.

La  réunion  avec  les  Experts  Techniques  du  27  mai  2021  a  fait  suite  à  une  série  de  dialogues nationaux  et  sous-régionaux  (pour  l’Afrique  Centrale,  Orientale,  Australe  et  Occidentale)  que RUFORUM  a  organisé  conjointement  avec  les  gouvernements  des  États  membres  et  d’autres acteurs afin de recueillir une compréhension collective des questions et actions nécessaires pour renforcer  les  Systèmes  Alimentaires  en  Afrique.  RUFORUM  organisera  deux  événements mondiaux,  une  réunion  pour  la  Jeunesse  Mondiale  le  01  Juin  2021  et  une  réunion  pour  les Réseaux Mondiaux d’Enseignement Supérieur, de Recherche et de Services Consultatifs le  2nd Juin  2021.  Les  résultats  de  ces  délibérations  seront  présentés  à  une  réunion  des  Ministres Africains de l’Agriculture, de l’Education et de la Science, de la Technologie et de l’Innovation, qui présenteront  ensuite  leurs  recommandations  aux  Chefs  d’État  et  de  Gouvernement  Africains, puis au Sommet des Nations Unies sur les Systèmes Alimentaires en octobre 2021.

Selon  le  Prof  Adipala  Ekwamu,  Secrétaire  Exécutif  de  RUFORUM  et  l’une  des  100  personnes nommées par les Nations Unies pour  défendre le Sommet des Nations Unies sur les Systèmes Alimentaires, les dialogues en cours offrent aux universités et à d’autres acteurs la possibilité de s’engager avec les gouvernements et la communauté mondiale vers des actions nécessaires pour mettre  la  fin  à  la  faim  et  à  la  malnutrition  et  développer  une  agriculture  et  des  systèmes alimentaires plus résilients, inclusifs et compatibles avec le climat.

Contacts: Name: Evaline Acan; Communications Assistant; Email: communications@ruforum.org

Press Release RUFORUM Hosts Africa Government Technical Experts

[Press Release] RUFORUM Hosts African Government Technical Experts


Kampala – 28 May 2021, The Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) hosted a virtual dialogue for Africa Government Technical Experts towards the UN Food Systems Summit 2021 under the theme “Transforming food systems is crucial for delivering all the Sustainable Development Goals”. Ten (10) African countries (Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe) participated in the Dialogue.

Universities in the Network as well as the policy makers recognize the interconnectedness between science and policy; the potential for universities to impact on innovations in the agrifood system sector; and the ability to harness the youth dividend and strengthen opportunities for agri-prenuership that will influence Africa’s attainment of the SDG targets. RUFORUM a Network of 129 universities in 38 African countries, reached out to Technical Experts in Africa for the dialogue to discuss the UN Food System Summit, agree on the key steps to be taken and the key messages to be shared with the Government Ministers for consideration towards the Food System Summit and to generate solutions and actions to inform not only the deliberations during the Food Summit but as an opportunity to advance high priority food systems with commitment at the highest national, regional and continent policy levels.

The meeting with the Technical Experts on 27th May 2021 followed a series of national and subregional dialogues (for Central, Eastern, Southern and West Africa) that RUFORUM organized jointly with Member State Governments and other actors so as to garner collective understanding of the issues and actions needed to strengthen Food Systems in Africa. The convening for North Africa and Middle East is slated for 10 June 2021. Prior to that RUFORUM will be hosting two global events, a convening for Global Youth on 01 June 2021, and a Convening for Global Higher Education, Research and Advisory Services Networks on 2nd June 2021. The outcomes of these deliberations will be presented to a meeting of Africa’s Ministers of Agriculture, Education and Science, Technology and innovation, who will then present their recommendations to African Heads of State and Government, and subsequently to the UN Food Systems Summit in October 2021.

According to Prof Adipala Ekwamu, RUFORUM Executive Secretary and one of the 100 persons appointed by the United Nations to champion the UN Food Systems Summit, the ongoing Dialogues provide opportunities for Universities and other actors to engage with the Governments and Global community towards needed actions towards ending hunger and malnutrition and developing more resilient, inclusive and climate –compatible agriculture and food systems.

Contacts: Name: Evaline Acan; Communications Assistant; Email: communications@ruforum.org

[Issue 84]: Media Monitoring: Extract of Press News on Higher Education in Africa

[Issue 83] : Media Monitoring: Extract of Press News on Higher Education in Africa

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