Rev. Robert Bimba, the charismatic head of the Community of Hope Agriculture Project (CHAP) and national coordinator for the Farmer’s Union Network (FUN), realized immediately when visiting Burkina Faso in the summer of 2012 that SRI had the potential to transform his country. While rice is centrally important to Liberia’s livelihoods and cultural heritage, production is low, and past efforts to change this have been met with limited success, at best. SRI, however, was different, and he knew this from the beginning. After one year of testing SRI on CHAP’s own plots, the organization has now conducted Liberia’s first national Training of Trainers (ToT), bringing together participants from every county in Liberia.
The national ToT, held from December 17th to 19th in Kakata City, Margibi County, brought together over 70 stakeholders, including representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture, and farmers from across the country. Now motived to train other farmers in their regions, the real work begins to adapt SRI’s principles into practices that respond well to various conditions found throughout the country.