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Agronomy Officer-Kotido Job at Mercy Corps - Career Opportunity in Uganda
Mercy Corps 37 Days Ago
Overview
Job Category: Environment, Forestry and Agriculture
Job Type: Full-Time
Deadline of this Job: 20th July 2020
Duty Station:  Kotido
Posted: 07-07-2020
Requirements
Job Status
No of Jobs: 1
Start Publishing: 08-07-2020
Stop Publishing (Put date of 2030): 07-07-2065
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Job Description

Vacancy title:
Agronomy Officer-Kotido

[ Type: FULL TIME , Industry: Nonprofit, and NGO , Category: Agronomist ]

Jobs at:

Mercy Corps

Deadline of this Job:
20 July 2020  

Duty Station:
Within Uganda , Kotido , East Africa

Summary
Date Posted: Tuesday, July 07, 2020 , Base Salary: Not Disclosed


JOB DETAILS:
PROGRAM/DEPARTMENT SUMMARY:
Mercy Corps implements high-quality, analytical development work in very difficult places. We have been operating in Uganda since 2006 and currently implement development programs in the Acholi and Karamoja sub-regions of Uganda with funding from USAID, EC, SDC, and USDA, WFP. We are currently implementing a market-development focused 5-year USAID/Food for Peace-funded program working in the northern and southern half of Karamoja (Amudat, Moroto, Karenga, Kaabong and Kotido districts) and in search of competent and creative persons to fill the positions of Agronomy Officer. The project, called Apolou aims to support the immediate needs of program beneficiaries while promoting long-term development by spurring systemic improvements in key economic sectors of northern and Southern Karamoja.
GENERAL POSITION SUMMARY:
The Agronomy Officer with support from the agronomy sector team work to achieve a transformation of attitudes and behavior to improve the economic future and quality of life of Apolo program beneficiaries. The ability of the Officer to drive the implementation of effective agricultural extension and advisory services for adoption of improved farming practices and technologies will be the position’s primary success factors. The second will be the degree to which the incumbent promotes and capture learning with his/her team, institutionalizing activity reviews, identifying and evaluating preconceptions and promoting a culture of inquisition. The third success factor will be the degree to which the incumbent successfully incorporates gender into program activities, not just by meeting gender beneficiary targets, but also innovatively considering the specific needs of women farmers and their constraints to farming (time, land ownership, money, decision making to mention a few.)
He or she will be responsible for sphere heading and planning of agronomy related trainings and monitoring with continuous reporting of the status of the schools to the Agronomy Extension Team Lead together with good collaboration with the different district agriculture bodies like the Sub County Agriculture Officers and different Livelihoods partners such as Harvest Plus and CIP.
The Agronomy officer will directly be in the frontline and responsible for successful implementation and rolling-out of good farming practices in line with the agronomy calendar through close and supportive monitoring of Assistant agronomists and Agronomy graduate trainee in fields of which may include crop rotation/intercropping, seedbed preparation, planting, weed, pest and disease control measures, post harvest handling and storages, soil water conservation, perma-gardening and crop/livestock integration through field based training. He or she will support her team to foster adoption of farmers to improved methods of conservation farming using a variety of methods to reach farmers such as personal contact with farmers on their farm, organizing study groups for farmers, establishment and management of crop demonstration plots, farmer field days and exchange visits will be used in reaching out farmers to promote adoption. The Officer will achieve this in liaison with his key team members, AVAs lead or model farmers, MCGs, VSLAs, Youth groups, Farmer groups, Enterprise Groups, Local government and Sub-county production department, agro-input dealers, and other Apolo program staff. The agricultural extension and advisory services will also include community based Orange Flesh Sweet Potato and Iron beans and he or she will take lead with his or her technical personnel to lead the farmers on ground and ensure promotion of farmer scale up on production.
The main target is to promote crop diversification for proper and successful utilization of quality agro-inputs (improved seeds, equipments and tools, fertilizers, crop protection chemicals) to increase production and productivity of the priority crops towards improved food security and livelihoods of the program beneficiaries while addressing malnutrition challenges in Northern and Southern Karamoja. In addition, the work involves considerable monitoring and assessing agricultural conditions and results. .

ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
• Participate in developing messages, structures and systems to continually improve Apolou`s Agricultural Private sector led Extension Services to improve the productivity of poor farmers and help them turn that productivity into improved food security and livelihoods. Focus is on crop production, vegetable gardening and post-harvest handling.
• Directly take lead in Apolou Agricultural Extension Work and supervise field activities to ensure effective use of resources and successful targeting of services to the most vulnerable beneficiaries’ farmers in northern and Southern Karamoja.
• Actively participate in community mobilization and sensitization for adoption of best Famer field school agronomic practices.
• Identify training needs, production constraints and devise solutions to address the problems at hand for both the Assistant Agronomists and the Farmers through the Assistant agronomists who will directly work with the AVAs.
• Supervise training of Apolou beneficiaries on selected topics in the extension curriculum and Famer Field School and ensure training is in accordance with the guidelines.
• Identify technologies, practices, tools, equipment, varieties majorly on conservation agriculture and partners that have the greatest potential to improve the agricultural productivity of Northern and Southern Karamoja and food security of the area’s most vulnerable, and engage/introduce them into GHG.
• Supervise and ensure the collection, compilation, verification, entry of data and keep data on Apolou program beneficiaries to inform programming, this will involve ensuring Assistant Agronomist are collecting all Agricultural Village Agent`s monthly reports from the field.
• Work hand in hand with the Market system development sector to guide and link farmers to access genuine agro-input implements from agro-input dealers, retailers, agents or stockiest.
• Coordinate and work closely with district production department/sub county authorities to ensure that they are informed about the program activities through curtsey visits to the Sub county headquarters of program operation and at the production department at the district.
• Prepare timely training, workshop, weekly and monthly progress reports by providing data to support evidence of tasks accomplished by all AVAs through the Assistant Agronomists and other work plan activities accomplished and submit to the Agronomy extension lead.
• Represent the agronomy extension sector in any Apolou designated and delegated agricultural extension and advisory services in northern and Southern Karamoja.
• Carryout verification of sector field submitted data by the Assistant Agronomists through different modes verification such as AVAs reports to capture the face and rate of farmer adoption to new technologies and better farming practices, organize AVA field extension days among others.
• Participate in organizing and conducting of monthly sector review meetings.
• Conduct Timely annual performance reviews of the assigned Assistant Agronomists
• Give technical support and ground supervision of the Assistant Agronomists and the Agronomy graduate trainees to ensure implementation of quality demonstration plots, farmer field days, farmer exchange visits, and perma-gardening and seed nurseries bed that may be supported by Apolou program.
• Coordinate with other Apolou teams and partners, including but not limited to: Livestock, Market System development, Health System Strengthening, KAPDA, RIAMRIAM, NARWA,AIDI
• Incorporate gender mainstreaming into Apolo program activities, considering the specific needs of women farmers and their constraints to farming (time, land ownership, money, decision making etc.)
• Participate in the program reviews, assessments, monitoring activities, learning and evaluations.
• Support the Agronomy Extension Team Lead with overall implementation of agriculture activities; develop future follow-on activity and any task as required.
• Any other duty as assigned
Other: Professional and personal conduct in line with Mercy Corps’ values, standards and codes of conduct.


Job Skills: Not Specified


QUALIFICATION AND EXPERIENCE:
• A minimum of a B.Sc. in PURELY Agronomy is desirable and preferred field experience in agricultural extension services, agricultural programming, Famer Field school, farmer training and community mobilization, project planning, activities with women, and similar relevant activities can apply. Candidate must be a self starter, motivated and able to work independently and take initiative.
• The successful candidate will also have excellent English language, verbal and written communication skills; proficiency in Ng’akarimojong is an added advantage preferable. Candidate must be willing to and able to travel extensively throughout northern Karamoja districts or program sites. Computer skill i.e. MS Office, MS excel and valid motorcycle riding permit is an added advantage.


Job Education: Not Specified


SUCCESS FACTORS:
• The ability of the Agronomy Officer to drive the implementation of effective Famer agricultural extension services and the adoption of improved conservation agriculture practices.
• Ability to promote and capture learning with her/his team, institutionalizing activity reviews, identifying and evaluating preconceptions and promoting a culture of inquisition.
• Degree to which that person successfully incorporates gender into program activities, not just by meeting gender beneficiary targets, but also be innovatively considering the specific needs of women farmers and their constraints to farming (time, land ownership money, etc.).


Work Hours: 8

 

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