The project is defined as the rehabilitation and upgrading of all 10 existing Agriculture Colleges (ACs) in Zambia, through the implementation of infrastructure improvements, renovation works, provision of equipment, curricula development, technical assistance and training, and the subsequent operation & maintenance of these colleges.
Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL)
Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL)
Total project costs / Total Grant ORIO
23,600,000 Euro / 12,100,000 Euro
The project “ Upgrading and Rehabilitation of the Education Infrastructure of Agriculture Colleges in Zambia” is a nation-wide project, covering all 10 Governmental Agriculture Colleges, located in the six provinces of Zambia, Southern, Lusaka, Central, Copperbelt, Muchinga and Eastern Province. These Agriculture Colleges are meant to service all the 10 provinces and 105 districts in Zambia. The rationale to further increase support to the Agriculture Colleges should be seen against the backdrop of (rural) poverty and national economic challenges, which include the lack of economic diversity, dependence on copper export and the volatility of world commodity prices, and the ongoing food security challenges in the nation. These issues will be addressed by the Zambia extension service (who will benefit from the training offered by the Agriculture Colleges) . The training will also benefit youth that will receive appropriate skills at the Agriculture Colleges to enhance pro-poor growth, diversity, private sector development and creation of sustainable livelihoods within the agriculture sector. In addition, large agro-companies will benefit from higher productivity through better skilled personnel. Key to rural development, job creation and technological advancement is human development and private sector development. This is hampered in the rural areas and agriculture sector through the low output (in quantity and quality) of the Agriculture Colleges, which provide education and training to rural youth, farmers and extension officers.
Due to lack of financial resources, there have been almost no capital investments to support the Agriculture Colleges in improving and maintaining their infrastructure. Most of these Agriculture Colleges have not undertaken infrastructure upgrades from the time they were established. Due to the bad state of the buildings, equipment, laboratories, facilities and learning materials, the Agriculture Colleges each year accept less students than the year before. As such the Agriculture Colleges receive less funding from the Government of Zambia (based amongst others on enrolment rates), resulting in a downwards spiral, which has been on-going for several years now.
The specific objective is to ensure that the rural population (small-scale farmers, youth and current and future extension officers) have access to and will benefit from quality agriculture practical vocational education and training provided by the Agriculture Colleges, and through quality, practical oriented extension services. This will be reached through the implementation of a sustainable project ased on a holistic approach for upgrading and rehabilitation of 10 Zambian Agriculture Colleges, including the establishment of one Staff Development Unit, to make the Agriculture Training Sector more responsive to labour market requirements for small holders, large scale agriculture and the extension services sector. Due to the project intervention, human development will be increased amongst rural youth, farmers and extension workers who will receive hands-on skills training and knowledge related to value chain management, market oriented approaches, entrepreneurship development, labour market linkages, community support/ poverty reduction programmes (including specific gender sensitive support programmes), knowledge transfer of agriculture best practices and higher technological inputs (which will be streamlined against the current developments within the agriculture sector) Therefore they will contribute to rural poverty reduction, income generation and improved food security through increased human development leading to better employment opportunities and income generation, use of better and cleaner production technologies, sharing of knowledge and skills, and will boost the local economies.