Global Soil Partnership

Celebrating the first 20 soil doctors’ trainers in Burkina Faso

The first phase of the Global Soil Doctors programme has successfully been implemented in Burkina Faso. This was made possible thanks to the close collaboration and pivotal role of the national promoter, BUNASOLS (Bureau National des Sols). Twenty technicians from BUNASOLS and from the extension service of the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Resources and Fisheries completed the online training of the FAO’s Global Soil Partnership (GSP) for becoming national trainers of the Global Soil Doctors programme. The training lasted three half-days and focused on the key role played by soils for human nutrition and food security. A series of posters and field exercises were developed to cover these topics. 

24/11/2022

After the online training, the trainers had to put the acquired knowledge into practice and present the program's educational tools to farmers in nearby villages. All the trainers proved excellent training capacities and a strong willingness to share the concepts and practices of sustainable soil management with farmers, complementing the face-to-face capacity building with practical examples and local knowledge. As a result, the twenty trainers were certified as official Global Soil Doctors programme Trainers at an official ceremony held on November 4, 2022 in Ouagadougou. The ceremony brought together national representatives and stakeholders to recognize the success of this first phase of the implementation. Moreover, this event proved to be an important venue for advancing further the cause of sustainable soil management, increasing the participation of national partners and ultimately ensuring the upscaling of the programme at the national level.

"Poor soil management is one of the reasons for the declining state of soil recourses and agricultural yields in this country. So, any action aimed at equipping farmers to make their practice wise in terms of soil management is to be welcomed and supported”, said the representative of the General Secretariat of the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Resources and Fisheries, Jean HARO, during the ceremony.

The need for sharing information and the importance of mutual support among trainers were the key messages of the speech of Mr Ibrahim OUEDRAOGO’s, FAO representative in Burkina Faso. At the same time, the general director of BUNASOLS, Mr Mamoudou TRAORE renewed its commitment and support to the GSP for the follow-up of the programme.

Now that the first phase of the implementation is concluded, is time to look at the next steps. The trainers have already selected forty-five champion farmers from different communities who will receive specific training to become "Soil Doctors". These Soil Doctors, will then empower other fellow farmers using the posters translated into three local languages: Mooré, Dioula and Fulfuldé. The commitment and outreach of the trainings provided by the Soil Doctors will be monitored and supported by the promoter in the coming months who, along with the GSP, will facilitate the application of the principles of sustainable soil management to improve the nutritional quality of food produced locally by hundreds of farmers in Burkina Faso.