DRF subcomponent is anchored in the third Northern Uganda Social Action Fund Project (NUSAF III) and is a subcomponent of Labor Intensive Public Works (LIPW). The objective of DRF is to develop a mechanism for scaling up assistance that Government of Uganda (GoU) provides to poor households in the event of a natural disaster. Currently in Karamoja, the shock being handled is drought through providing cash for temporal labor intensive public works to smoothen consumption of beneficiaries during the lean seasons. In order to achieve this the DRF subcomponent looks to develop a more systematic, robust system for collecting, storing and analyzing drought risk related information to enable GoU make informed and timely decisions backed by scientific data. As such there is need to improve systems for access to risk related information to quicken the decision making process. Thus the goal of the concluded capacity building activity was to support data collection in order to provide objective information to support OPM’s decision in the implementation of the DRF subcomponent.
On 10 March 2017, an introductory crop monitoring training session with support from NASA SERVIR was held at the NECOC on the use of the Uganda Crop Monitor Tool and the Global Agriculture Monitoring System (GLAM). A team of 15 staff of the department of relief disaster preparedness and management (DRDPM) was taken through an introductory session of 2 hours on both the Crop Monitor for Uganda and the GLAM portal. The training was facilitated by Dr. Catherine Nakalembe Assistant Research Professor at The University of Maryland. The training participants produced a map depicting February 2017 Crop and Pasture conditions in the country. The skills gained in this training were used also to update the Uganda National Integrated Early Warning Systems (U-NIEWS) Bulletin which is now published every month and provides information regarding crop and pasture conditions across that country. A 2nd level follow up training facilitated by Dr. Nakalembe was therefore conducted to refresh DRDPM (OPM) staff on new updates in the field of crop monitoring. Thirteen (13) district and sub county agricultural officials of the 7 Karamoja region districts also attended the training.
The main objective of the training was to enhance the capacity of DRDPM staff and district Agricultural staff from the Karamoja region districts on the use of the developed Uganda Crop Monitor, the East Africa Global Agriculture Monitoring System (GLAM East Africa). The training also produced crop and livestock conditions monitoring data collection tools and templates for field reporting. Using the developed Geo-ODK based tools, the teams will collect field based crop and livestock conditions’ data which will be used in the DRF scalability assessment at the end of the season.
1. Data collection form templates for crop and livestock conditions monitoring were developed.
2. DRPM officials were trained together with 13 Karamoja region agricultural officials (7 district agricultural officials and 6 sub county agricultural officials) to act as sentinels/ focal points for the Uganda Crop Monitor system.
3. Strengthened practical skills in crop assessments using novel tools for timely reporting on the status of agricultural crops.
4. A review or previous crop assessment and evaluation on areas to improve
5. A data aggregation system and dashboard for field data visualization was set up.