Project brief: New Alliance ICT Extension Challenge Fund Tanzania

FRI’s overall goal was to contribute to increased agricultural output and productivity by scaling up the use of productivity-enhanced agricultural innovations, and marketing mechanisms by small-scale farmers (both male and female) in Tanzania, using a combination of ICT-enabled agriculture extension approaches (participatory radio, mobile services) to integrate into and engage with traditional extension services.

Summary of results:
• The number of subscribers that have received SMS were estimated at 46,564 (33,962 males and 12,602 females).
• The number of listeners and SMS service users who have applied SSTP technologies were estimated at 406,000 (244,000 males and 162,000 females).

What we learned:
Implementers and donors should take into consideration beneficiary’s and partner’s familiarity with the technologies and techniques they plan to use, as well as their preferences in communication channels, cost implications, accessibility and applications.

It is also important to emphasize that radio, as an ICT, is a two-way dialogue and not a one-way dissemination. Consequently, interactive radio is very different than traditional radio. Radio does not go in the communications budget line, rather it is a development tool and project in its own right that can achieve amazing results. Too often, communication for
development work is wrapped into more promotional or public relations oriented budget lines.

Radio is still the best way to reach rural populations because it uses existing infrastructure, is easily transmitted in local languages, and can be aired at the most convenient time for the audience. Moreover, it is extremely cost effective, easily scalable,and creates demand for project partners.

This project is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The contents of this report are the responsibility of Farm Radio International and IBTCI and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.

Year Published: 2018

Contact: Rex Chapota at rchapota@farmradio.org

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