Open Call For Proposals: Field Attachment Program Award (FAPA)


Proposals will be accepted throughout 2017

The Field Attachment Program Award (FAPA) is a competitive grants program designed as graduate student internship to link thesis research findings and recommendations to application and use at community level. The FAPA grants are intended to provide opportunity for dissemination of research outputs with a view to inform policy development and hone students’ skills in working with communities to use the research outputs that have been generated.

The FAPA is exclusively targeting RUFORUM supported MSc students who are in the process of finalising (completed MSc thesis and submitted for examination) their MSc level training.

The Field Attachment Awards (FAPA) are designed to encourage students to follow through with the dissemination of their research and to enable them to link more closely with the agencies working in the area where their research was carried out. It is established for those students who have developed a useful intervention, product or service as part of their Project and who have handed in their thesis, have no more stipend due from the GRG or CARP, but who could make a more meaningful impact if they stay on for a few more months and provide advisory services related to their research. Each applicant is expected to provide a short motivation that outlines what they will be doing, how it will contribute to the communities, and also to the graduate’s own development.

The FAPA is designed to give students real world experience and contacts with development and advisory agencies. All applications will be required to have a supporting letter from their Supervisor and from the Dean of Faculty, and applications will be strengthened if they also have a commitment letter from the community and or/ a government agency, NGO, or a private company that they will be hosting the student for their FAPA activities.

The award provides only for a living stipend and limited travel for three to four months. It is designed to link the student closely with a service provider in the area and to give them work experience.

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Intra-ACP Mobility scholarship and RUFORUM award reshaped my career

Joash1.jpgThe Boeing 737-800 aircraft touched down at Kamuzu International Airport at about 12.30 pm on the 13th of June 2014. The plane’s door opened and I walked out to step on Malawi soil for the first time in my life. I had just arrived from my home country, Kenya, to pursue a master’s degree in Aquaculture at Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR), thanks to the Intra-ACP Mobility Project that awarded me a scholarship. My MSc study at LUANAR has greatly reshaped my career and opened doors to another world.

The design of the Intra-ACP Academic Mobility Scholarship did not cover research costs, but adequately catered for tuition, travel and living expenses. I was therefore privileged to secure another award, a Field Attachments Program Award (FAPA) from the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM). This award (RU FAPA 2015 086) was

The design of the Intra-ACP Academic Mobility Scholarship did not cover research costs, but adequately catered for tuition, travel and living expenses. I was therefore privileged to secure another award, a Field Attachments Program Award (FAPA) from the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM). This award (RU FAPA 2015 086) was a very a timely compliment to the Intra-ACP Scholarship and helped me carry out my research.  My research project, titled “Effect of dietary spirulina (Arthrospira platensis) supplements on growth, hematological factors and survival of Oreochromis shiranus challenged with Aeromonas hydrophila” has equipped me with a wealth of experience that will help me contribute to the expansion of aquaculture within and outside Kenya.

JoashDuring my time in Malawi, I have developed an incredible network of friends, peers, and professional contacts and have gained skills in conducting research studies, literature search, analyzing and summarizing data. I have gained experience in feed processing and storage, removal of anti-nutrients in fish feed ingredients, fish feed formulation, and proximate analysis of nutrients in fish tissue and feed ingredients. Furthermore, my project research exposed me to the analysis of growth models and feeding experiment protocols in fish. I am also well versed in sterile microbiological techniques, DNA and RNA extraction, spectrophotometry, use of a haemocytometer, microscopic investigation, aseptic technique, and bacterial isolation and cultivation.

Otiato Siringi is a Kenyan-born and based specialist in education, horticulture and aquaculture. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Horticulture from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), Post Graduate Diploma in Education from Kenyatta University and, more recently, Master of Science in Aquaculture from Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR). Joash previously worked as a high school teacher at Juja Preparatory and Senior School, Kenya, where he taught biology, chemistry and agriculture.


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Engaging smallholder farmers in cassava value addition in Northern Uganda through community engagement approach

By Sam Elolu[1]

Cassava Project

Cassava is a key staple in Uganda and is increasingly gaining popularity as an income generating crop. The Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture has engaged university-based research teams to generate innovations and solutions to constraints along the cassava value chain. This storyline features one of the graduate students working with a research team at Gulu University that is focusing on improving the protein and micro-nutrient content of gari (cassava meal) for primary school feeding in North and North Eastern Uganda. It also addresses value addition in cassava as both a food crop and income generating crop.

As a graduate student, my thesis research is based on the understanding that nutrition is key for the proper growth and development of children and pre-requisite for achievement of full human potential. To secure food security and nutritional sufficiency, there are many opportunities and avenues for fortification of staple crops such cassava. Recognising the importance of child nutrition, the Government of Uganda is encouraging provision of school meals (including breakfast for primary school pupils). The use of local foods to provide nutritious and affordable meals for the economically disadvantaged regions of the country is therefore a key intervention that will contribute to the increased school attendance, better nutrition and educational achievement.

The research seeks to optimise the formulation of gari using soy beans and mukene (silver fish) to improve its protein and micronutrient content, assess the acceptability of the nutritionally improved product among primary school children, and test the effect of fortification on the keeping quality of gari.

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From community psychologist to agricultural change agent: Margaret Gumisiriza’s story


Studying community psychology nurtured my innate dream to become a change agent in the community. By the time I completed my undergraduate degree in 2009, this dream was strongly ingrained in my aspirations.

My resolve to make an impact on peoples’ livelihoods was strengthened when I worked with farmers in Masaka and Ngora districts in Uganda on projects implemented by the National Livestock Resources Research Institute (NaLIRRI). Through interaction with these farmers, I realized that they faced grave challenges as a result of climate variability and change of which they had little knowledge, just like myself. I thus set out on a journey to search for ways of transforming their livelihoods through optimizing information and technology innovations. As a first step, I was going to enroll for a course to build my knowledge on the dynamics of climate change and set me on a new career path.

Financial challenges threatened this new path, but a scholarship for a Masters in Climate and Society from the Rockefeller Foundation, through the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM), arrived at the opportune moment and I enrolled for the programme at Mekelle University in Ethiopia. The programme improved my understanding of climate change and how to transform society through innovation and community participation.

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