Rural Development Centre
The Rural Development Centre is one of the Institute's section operating under the umbrella of the Centre for Agricultural Development and Empowerment (CADE) together with the farm. Furthermore, this section plays a critical role in ensuring that the Institute provides both formal and non-formal short course trainings in Crop production, Animal Production and Agribusiness at NQF level 2 to NQF level 4. The formal short course training programmes offered by the centre are accredited by Agri-SETA while the non-formal programmes are tailor-made trainings based on the need of the client. Through RDC, the Institute provides services to the government agencies and departments, private companies and municipalities in training of agricultural extension officers, youth and agricultural teachers. Furthermore, the RDC provides bridging course programme and one stop shop which is meant to provide services such typing, printing, photocopying, scanning and internet to surrounding communities.
NARYSEC programme is a Youth skills development and employment programme. It is the youth flagship programme of the Dept. of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development. Since the commencement of the programme in 2013, Fort Cox was always in partnership with the department for the implementation of the programme for training on both plant and animal production. In 2021 Fort Cox through its Rural Development Center trained 60 Narysec youth on plant and animal production.
In 2021 Fort Cox trained around 80 farm assistants across the Eastern Cape Province on general operations of the farm. These farm assistants were from all agriculture high schools of the province.
As part of community outreach programm, in 2021 Fort Cox trained about 45 youth from surrounding villages on plant and animal production for a period of 8 months. The learnership was funded and accredited by Agriseta.
Compensation Fund Beneficiary: In 2021 Fort Cox entered into partnership with Dept. of Labour for training of 15 Compensation Fund beneficiaries, who suffered different injuries on duty and ultimately declared unfit to work again. This group of people is currently at Fort Cox receiving training on piggery production. The duration of their training is 4 months, which started at the beginning of December 2021.
The training was conducted in 2021 through the partnership with OTP(Office of the Premier) and Fort Cox for training of 10 military veterans on small stock, piggery and poultry production. The last training will be conducted in February on vegetable production. Their training was fully funded by Eastern Cape OTP.
Through RDC, the Institute plays a significant role to provision crop and animal production training to capacitate the emerging farmers around the province. Furthermore, the Institute has played a role in the cooperatives' mentorship programme aimed at uplifting or sustaining production as well as ensuring that the capacity of the members is improved.
The Institute has been involved in training As part of improving teaching and learning of agricultural subjects,
Fort Cox also has a partnership with Eastern Cape Provincial Dept. of Agric.(DRDAR) for training of Extension Officers from various areas identified. The training always took place once every year.
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