On July 12, the PREVENT project launched a Hatchery Field Technicians training programme in Rwanda as part of its activities and efforts to establish an innovative veterinary health platform in Africa through medium-size hatchery vaccination.
Since its inception in 2021, PREVENT is collaborating with various medium-sized hatcheries across 8 countries in Africa to provide high-quality, vaccinated day-old chicks to small-scale producers (SSPs) together with practical advice and valuable guidance from a team of field technicians. As of now, the project has trained 100 field technicians in Tanzania, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, and is now commencing training activities in Rwanda.
The event gathered officials from Ceva Santé Animale (the project partner of GALVmed), and representatives from different official bodies of Rwanda: Rwanda Agriculture Board (RAB), School of Veterinary Medicine (University of Rwanda), Department of Veterinary Research and Professional Development, and Rwanda’s poultry industry association. Five of the six hatcheries in Rwanda were also in attendance, as well as field technicians and representative farmers. Tom Osebe, GALVmed Senior Manager of Commercial Development & Impact in Africa, and Project Manager of the PREVENT project, was in attendance as a representative of GALVmed.
This launch marked the start of a three-module training. Module 1 dwells on equipping field technicians with skills to generate interest in vaccinated chicks; module 2 on safeguarding biosecurity as well as management practices; and module 3 will focus on troubleshooting. Field technicians completing this set of training will work closely with farmers to realise their aspirations of being successful poultry producers. Additionally, they will serve as intermediaries between the hatcheries and poultry farmers, promoting the demand for vaccinated day-old chicks and helping to create new markets for them.
Government officials acknowledged the importance of initiatives like PREVENT in transforming the nascent Rwanda poultry sub-sector. It was noted that presently, the country lacked animal health service providers specialised in poultry production, suggesting deliberate effort was needed to overcome this. Considering that the demand for animal-based protein is expected to double by 2050, the pivotal role of poultry production in Rwanda in meeting this escalating demand was deeply appreciated.
The PREVENT project (PRomoting and Enabling Vaccination Efficiently, Now and Tomorrow), is a 4-year initiative that aims to improve the efficiency and sustainability of small-scale poultry production in Sub-Saharan Africa. The PREVENT project is a partnership between Ceva Santé Animale (a global veterinary health company) and GALVmed, with the support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.