Republic of the Congo-Brazzaville and Rwanda Agricultural Development Projects
With the assistance of NIFA, USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service led school garden projects in the Republic of the Congo and Rwanda. The gardens were intended to:
- produce food for a school feeding program;
- provide a laboratory to supplement the standard school curriculum;
- and, contribute to the intellectual, psychological, and physical development of the students.
In the Congo, land-grant university experts, recruited by NIFA, developed a teacher training manual, a pocket guide, teacher lesson plans, and teaching aids, such as posters and demonstration kits that supplement classroom instruction of the teachers. The manual explains how to develop a school garden and how to incorporate the garden into the classroom as a teaching aide for science and other subjects.
The school garden team trained 80 teachers and 20 Pygmy representatives from 31 schools during the first round of training in December of 2005. Participants hoped that the gardening information would have benefits beyond the schools, and be used by adults in the respective communities.
Teacher training materials were developed for the Rwandan project.
The main difference between the two projects is that the project in Rwanda was focused on developing materials for the secondary school or middle school level, while in the Congo, the focus was on the primary school level.
The projects were funded by U.S. Agency for International Development.