Cheptebo AIC Rural Development Centre, Kerio Valley, Kenya

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Cheptebo Agricultural Training and Innovation Centre



2019 Brochure of Training Modules





 Modules currently available





Module 1     Introduction to Crop and Livestock Production in semi arid areas

Module 2     Fruit Production in semi arid areas

Module 3     Dairy management in semi arid areas

Module 4     Poultry management

Module 5     Beekeeping


Any group wishing to have training in a specific subject area now should contact the Training Coordinator to discuss their training requirements.


All Modules will have a daily component where Biblical principles are presented to guide individuals, families and life activities.

 


Cheptebo Agricultural Training and Innovation Centre is in the process of applying for accreditation with TVETA ( Technical and Vocational Educational Training Authority).


COURSE FEES:  please click here for details








Detailed description of training modules.




Module 1                 Introduction to Crop and Livestock Production in semi arid areas


Crop and livestock production in semi arid areas must meet the challenges of low and erratic rainfall patterns, high temperatures and differing levels of soil fertility. This will limit the production potential for some types of crops and livestock but can be a positive production advantage for other crops, varieties and types of livestock. With almost 30 years of practical experience the Cheptebo RDC farm has identified crops types and varieties as well as livestock breeds which are particularly suited to the semi arid areas. To support these activities a range of production methods have been developed to make the best use of available resources and to exploit the comparative advantages of the condition experienced in the semi arid areas.


This module will present an overview of crop and livestock production in semi arid areas. Time will not permit detailed instruction and training in all aspects of production but the course will introduce all the main crops and livestock being demonstrated on the Centre farm as well as appropriate production methods. As with all modules on offer, about 1/3 of the total module time will be devoted to classroom instruction while the remaining time will offer course participants practical 'hands on' experience on the farm.

The module will also include instruction on the Farming God's Way programme, on value addition in agricultural production, life skills and raising the family economy.


Course participants who wish to develop their understanding and practical skill in any part of what is presented in this introductory course can the go on to take other specialist modules to meet their requirements.


Learning Outcomes


Course participants will be able to:

  • Identify the main types of soil , their characteristics and management
  • Understand the  requirements and utilisation of water in semi arid agricultural production
  • Know the main categories of crops (field, vegetable and fruit) which can be grown in semi arid areas and their production requirements
  • Know the various types of livestock suited to semi arid areas and requirements for successful management
  • Have an understanding of tree nursery establishment and management
  • Be aware of specialist production systems such as greenhouse technology, fruit tree grafting and budding, tissue culture bananas and the        Farming God’s Way system.
  • understand the possibilities of value addition in agricultural production.
  • have a basic understanding of small business management
  • have an understanding of how to raise the family economy
  • have an understanding of life skills.

Duration of module   5 days


Module 2           Fruit Production in semi arid areas

Mango production has become a major cash crop in some parts of Kenya. Mature mango trees are highly drought tolerant and relatively disease free. Mango fruit of high quality finds a ready market both internally and increasingly as an export crop. A large number of varieties are now available to suit different growing conditions and to extend the traditional mango harvesting season.


Module Description

The module will cover all aspects of mango production, from the selection of suitable varieties to planning, field management to harvesting and marketing. Cheptebo Centre farm provides a large tree nursery and demonstration areas of mature mango trees representing all the main varieties suitable for semi arid areas. The training will include classroom instruction and detailed fact sheets providing written information on all aspects of mango production. However a major emphasis in the module will be on learning through practical activities. Course participants should be prepared to spend a substantial proportion of the time performing all the activities required for successful mango production.



Learning Outcomes


Course participants will be able to:

  • Identify the main mango varieties and their characteristics
  • select suitable soils and locations to establish mango trees
  • graft mango seedlings and care for them in the nursery
  • correctly space and plant mango seedling in the field
  • prune growing trees
  • identify pests and diseases and take appropriate action
  • maintain soil fertility and irrigate as necessary
  • identify mature fruit, harvest and store appropriately
  • general management of mango orchard
  • transport and market fresh fruit
  • understand the importance of ‘value addition’
  • understand the financial costs and benefit associated with mango production.


   Citrus Production

Citrus fruits include orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit and tangerine. Overall production has been of minor importance in semi arid areas but a good market exists for quality citrus fruit. The centre farm maintains an orchard of Orange tree plus a few lemon trees for demonstration, training and production. The tree nursery raises budded citrus seedlings using lemon rootstock and scions from the farms mature trees. The main varieties grown are Washington Navel and Valencia.

Module Description

The module will cover all aspects of orange production, from the selection of suitable varieties, citrus nursery management to planting, field management, harvesting and marketing. Cheptebo Centre farm provides a nursery and demonstration areas of mature orange trees representing the main varieties suitable for semi arid areas. The training will include classroom instruction and detailed fact sheets providing written information on all aspects of banana production. However a major emphasis in the module will be on learning through practical activities. Course participants should be prepared to spend a substantial  proportion of the time performing all the activities required for successful citrus production.


Learning Outcomes

  • Identify the main orange varieties and their characteristics
  • select suitable soils and locations to establish orange trees
  • bud citrus seedlings and care for them in the nursery
  • correctly space and plant citrus trees in the field
  • identify pests and diseases and take appropriate action
  • maintain soil fertility and irrigate as necessary
  • identify mature fruit, harvest and store appropriately
  • transport and market fresh fruit
  • understand the importance of ‘value addition’
  • understand the financial costs and benefit associated with orange production.


   Banana Production

Banana production is increasing in importance in semi arid areas with the introduction of new early maturing varieties of improved quality.

To improve the availability of high quality banana planting material, the Centre farm receives consignments of tissue culture banana plantlets from the laboratories of Jomo Kenyatta University. These are grown on and then hardened off for sale to local farmers. The plants are guaranteed disease free. All these new varieties are now being grown on the Centre farm and by neighbouring farmers.


Module Description

The module will cover all aspects of banana production, from the selection of suitable varieties to planning, field management to harvesting and marketing. Cheptebo Centre farm provides a large nursery and demonstration areas of mature banana representing all the main varieties suitable for semi arid areas. The training will include classroom instruction and detailed fact sheets providing written information on all aspects of banana production. However a major emphasis in the module will be on learning through practical activities. Course participants should be prepared to spend a substantial proportion of the time performing all the activities required for successful mango production.


Learning Outcomes

  • Identify the main banana varieties and their characteristics
  • select suitable soils and locations to establish banana plants
  • correctly space and plant bananas in the field
  • identify pests and diseases and take appropriate action
  • maintain soil fertility and irrigate as necessary
  • identify mature fruit, harvest and store appropriately
  • transport and market fresh fruit
  • understand the importance of ‘value addition’
  • understand the financial costs and benefit associated with mango production.


 Pawpaw Production

Pawpaw has traditionally been grown mainly for domestic consumption. However there is potential to increase production to meet an increasing demand for high quality fruit. As a fast maturing tree with only a limited productive lifespan, pawpaw is well suited to intercropping with slower maturing crops such as mango.

Mature fruit is difficult to transport over long distances so marketing is an important consideration. The centre farm maintains a stand of pawpaw and uses the trees in an intercropping system.

Module Description

The module will cover all aspects of pawpaw production, from the selection of suitable varieties to planning, field management, harvesting and marketing. Cheptebo Centre farm provides a nursery and demonstration areas of mature pawpaw trees representing the main varieties suitable for semi arid areas. The training will include classroom instruction and detailed fact sheets providing written information on all aspects of pawpaw production. However a major emphasis in the module will be on learning through practical activities. Course participants should be prepared to spend a substantial proportion of the time performing all the activities required for successful pawpaw production.


Learning Outcomes

  • Identify the main pawpaw varieties and their characteristics
  • select suitable soils and locations to establish pawpaw trees
  • correctly space and plant citrus trees in the field
  • correctly identify male and female trees
  • identify pests and diseases and take appropriate action
  • maintain soil fertility and irrigate as necessary
  • identify mature fruit, harvest and store appropriately
  • transport and market fresh fruit
  • understand the importance of ‘value addition’
  • understand the financial costs and benefit associated with pawpaw production.


Other crops now included in this module are Avocado and Macadamia.


Duration of module  5 days





Module 3        Dairy Management in semi arid areas

                                           This module includes both dairy cattle and dairy goats

Until fairly recently the semi arid areas of Kenya were considered to be suited only to extensively grazed indigenous cattle and goats, local poultry and honey production. The experience of the Cheptebo RDC farm has demonstrated that with carefully selected breeds and appropriate management systems these areas can successfully support a wide range of improved animals. The centre farm specialises in dairy production (cattle and goats) as well as poultry and beekeeping.

This module introduces participants to the main types and breeds which have proved well suited to semi arid areas. The module will consider management requirements such as housing, nutrition, breeding, health and production. Value addition to livestock produce such as milk products and honey and beeswax will also be demonstrated.



Traditionally, milk yields in semi arid areas were typically very low due to the harsh climatic conditions. Local  breeds of cattle were well adapted to these conditions, and could survive on poor quality fodder and unreliable water supplies. The Cheptebo farm has introduced improved dairy breeds and this, combined with a cross breeding programme and improved management systems, has resulted in very significant increases in milk yields being achieved.


Module Description  This module will present the various breeds of dairy cattle suited to the semi arid areas, based on the experience at Cheptebo.   Participants will learn about the construction of dairy buildings, acquiring suitable animals, the provision of fodder and concentrates as well as all aspects of  breeding, nutrition, health, milking and general care of these valuable animals. At the end of the module participants will be able to plan a  dairy enterprise and provide all the requirements and management for a  successful dairy unit.

Course participants should be prepared to spend a substantial proportion of the module time performing all the activities required to establish and manage a successful dairy enterprise.


Learning Outcomes.

Participants will be able to ;

  • understand the characteristics of the various dairy cattle  breeds and their suitability of different areas and farming systems
  • understand the different management systems from pasture grazing to zero grazing
  • plan the construction of a building for dairy cattle
  • plan for  and provide adequate fodder and other feeds for each stage of the cows productive cycle
  • plan and implement a breeding programme and understand both natural breeding and artificial insemination
  • manage the cow through each stage of the productive cycle from mating to calving
  • care for calves frombirth to weaning
  • carry out milking in a professional and hygienic way
  • carry out all the regular management practices require for dairy cattle
  • maintain animal health, identify and treat common diseases, 
  • keep records and calculate the financial factors relating to the enterprise

   Dairy Goat Management 

Goats are widely distributed and well adapted to many different environments in Africa.

They can survive in harsh conditions and can live off poor vegetation and withstand water shortages. They have been kept mainly for meat, with their milk production usually being very low.

The introduction of improved milk breeds has substantially increased milk yield from both pure bred and cross bred animals. Goats’ milk is in high demand and is also important for people who are allergic to cows’ milk. With potential milk yields of up to 5 litres per goat per day, a higher level of management is necessary but the potential for increased income from thios enterprise is significant.




Module Description

The module will consider the various breeds of dairy goat available and their suitability for different climatic conditions and farming systems. Participants will learn about the construction of goat housing and provision of fodder as well as all aspects of breeding, health, milking and general care of these valuable animals. Course participants should be prepared to spend a substantial proportion of the time performing all the activities required to establish and manage a successful dairy goat enterprise.


Learning Outcomes.

Participants will be able to;

  • understand the characteristics of the various dairy goat breeds and their suitability of different areas and farming systems
  • plan and construct a building for dairy goats
  • plan and provide for adequate fodder and other feeds for each stage of the goats productive cycle
  • plan and implement a breeding programme
  • manage the goat through each stage of the productive cycle from mating to kidding
  • care for young kids from birth to weaning
  • carry out milking in a professional and hygienic way
  • carry out all the regular management practices require for dairy goats
  • identify and treat common diseases
  • keep records and calculate the financial factors relating to the enterprise

Duration of module     5 days






Module 4              Poultry management                                      

Poultry production can be successfully undertaken in many different environments in Africa, including the semi arid areas. Poultry meat and eggs provide a valuable addition to the diet and family income. Production can be small scale to provide for the family or on a much larger scale as a commercial enterprise. At present this module only deals with hens (layers and broilers)  and not with other types of poultry.


Module Description

The module will consider the various breeds of poultry available and their suitability for different climatic conditions and farming systems. Participants will learn about the construction of poultry housing and provision of feeds as well as all aspects of breeding, health, egg and poultry meat production and general care of the birds. Course participants should be prepared to spend a substantial proportion of the time performing all the activities required to establish and manage a successful poultry enterprise.



Learning Outcomes


Participants will be able to

  •   understand the importance of poultry production as a business
  •  know the breeds available and their characteristics
  •   provide suitable housing and sanitation
  •   manage brooding 
  •   understand the requirements of feeding 
  •   understand poultry diseases and undertake disease control
  •   undertake vaccinations
  •   understand and implement bio-security measures
  •   undertake marketing of poultry products
  •   keep records and calculate the financial factors relating to the enterprise
  •   undertake marketing of poultry products

Duration of module    3 days



Module 5              Beekeeping                                                          

Harvesting wild honey has been a traditional activity practised in semi arid areas over many centuries and has provided a valued supplement to local diets as well as for medicinal purposes. More recently, traditional log hives have been used to attract bees and eliminate the need to go hunting for this valuable commodity.

Modern bee hives and management techniques build on this local knowledge and enable farmers to increase production and produce  high quality honey for local consumption and increasingly for sale. Bees wax is an important byproduct which can be used to produce a wide range of products.




Module Description


The module will include a detailed presentation of the establishment and management of a modern top bar beehive unit.  Participants will  learn how a bee colony functions and how honey is produced. The module will explain the construction of a top bar hive, suitable locations for a colony, the importance of flowering plans and all aspects of the management of the colony. Pests and diseases will be identified and appropriate precautions and treatments explained. Honey harvesting and storage, the production of beeswax and beeswax products and sales of  these products will also be considered within the module. 

A major emphasis in the module will be on learning through practical activities. Course participants should be prepared to spend a substantial proportion of the time performing all the activities required for successful honey production.


Learning Outcomes


Course participants will be able to;


  • understand the construction, care and use of a modern top bar hive
  • identify and understand the function of queen, worker and drone bees within the colony
  • understand the process of honey production including the range and importance of     flowering plants
  • establish a honey bee colony in a top bar hive
  • undertake all aspects of management throughout the year
  • identify and take appropriate precautions against pests and diseases
  • harvest honey and produce honey, beeswax and beeswax products for sale

Duration of module  5 days
 
COURSE FEES:  please click here for details
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