AR and NAFAKA comms. joint meeting May2017

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Minutes of the AR-NAFAKA project communication teams meeting
3 May.2017
Virtual (Skype)
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Present[edit | edit source]

  1. Jonathan Odhong’ – Research Communication Specialist/Africa RISING West Africa and East/Southern Africa Projects
  2. Nassoro Ally – Behavior Change & Communication Specialist/NAFAKA project
  3. Gloriana Ndibalema –Research Communication Assistant/Africa RISING projects (Secretary)
  4. Julius Mtemahanji – Public Relations & Communication specialist/NAFAKA project


  1. Irmgard Hoeschle-Zeledon – Manager/ Africa RISING West Africa and East/Southern Africa Projects
  2. Mateete Bekunda- Chief Scientist/Africa RISING East & Southern Africa RISING Projects
  3. Haroon Sseguya – Technology Scaling Specialist/ Africa RISING project
  4. Joe Tindwe – Mbeya Regional Coordinator/ NAFAKA project

Agenda[edit | edit source]

  1. Areas of collaboration between Africa RISING comm. team and NAFAKA team
  2. Upcoming review & planning for AR – NAFAKA project

Introduction[edit | edit source]

  • A group Skype call meeting of the AR-NAFAKA project communication team was held on Wednesday 3 May, 2017. It began at 09:00 Nigeria time / 11:00 Tanzania time.
  • Jonathan outlined the agenda as it was earlier communicated to the participants through email.
  • The agenda was approved and supported by all the participants.
  • Members noted that the first agenda item was very broad and would best be tackled by outlining particular items to focus on. The following items emerged:
-Preparation of cropping calendars for 2017/2018 season
-Production of a project brochure
- Sharing of success stories
- Exchange of experiences/cross-learning
- Publication of stories in the NAFAKA Newsletter
- Participation in the NAFAKA annual photo contest
  • Jonathan explained and acknowledged initial request by the leadership of both Africa RISING projects and the NAFAKA project for stronger collaboration by the respective communication teams. He also added that the two communication teams had started some preliminary discussions and this meeting was a continuation of those discussions.
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Areas of collaboration/what items can we jointly work on this year.[edit | edit source]

Preparation of cropping calendars for 2017/2018 season

  • Members noted that every year, NAFAKA prepares cropping calendars and distributes them to the Village Based Agricultural Agents (VBAAs) involved in maize and rice value chains within the project. Can this initiative be extended to the vegetable and legume VBAAs too?


  • NAFAKA comms. team will continue producing maize and rice cropping calendars while Africa RISING comms. team will produce the vegetable and legume cropping calendars.
  • All the cropping calendars to follow the same branding.
  • Jonathan to start preliminary work of putting together a script for the vegetable and legumes calendars for next year.
  • NAFAKA comms. team to link Jonathan up with a cartoonist from Dar es Salaam called Marco Tibasima for follow up.

Production of a project brochure

  • Members noted that there should be a brochure that briefly inform about the AR-NAFAKA project


  • Gloriana to work on the first draft of the brochure and share with the team for their inputs.

Sharing of success stories

  • Members noted that both teams have been publishing success stories, but there was no sharing or cross posting mechanism established so far. This situation needs to be addressed.


  • The team discussed and agreed on a workflow process that will ensure stories published by either communications team is shared.
  • After doing a quick audit of the communication platforms used by NAFAKA and AR independently, members agreed to cross-post all materials published under the collaboration project.

Exchange of experiences/cross-learning

  • Nassoro requested for clarification on the request for him to have an exchange visit with the Africa RISING team working on OFSP in Zambia. Jonathan shared briefly about the behavior change approaches used by the AR Zambia team and encouraged Nassoro to get in touch with the team.


  • Nassoro to write an email to the leader OFSP activities in AR Zambia, Felistus Chipungu, requesting for better information about their BCC campaign.
  • Jonathan to share some background documents for Nassoro to read about the OFSP experiences.
  • AR Manager Irmgard H-Zeledon to be copied to this email to Felistus.

Publication of stories in the NAFAKA Newsletter

  • Julius explained that NAFAKA was working on newsletter and if the AR team had some stories to contribute they would be happy to have them.


  • Jonathan to share the stories published by Africa RISING comms. team so far for consideration.

Participation in the NAFAKA annual photo contest

  • Julius explained that NAFAKA communication team has an annual Field Photo Contest; a competition of best photos taken by the field assistants. The winning photos are always used for communication publications and the winner is being awarded. He explained that this competition is meant to show recognition and motivate field assistants to be more pro-active in taking photos. He enquired whether AR team would like to share and submit some photos to this competition. Julius further requested an explanation of the process through which AR collects pictures and how they are curetted.
  • Jonathan explained that for AR the responsibility of taking photos mainly falls on Gloriana and himself because of various reasons, but key among them being expertise. The photos they take during field visits are then usually sorted and the best ones posted on the project’s open access repository on Flickr ([[1]]). Gloriana added that on certain occasions photos are also collected from researchers and technical field assistants, but they still have to be reviewed before they are posted to Flickr.
  • Members then discussed other issues concerning photos, guidelines and the policies by each project regarding photos.


  • Africa RISING communication team to be included in the photo contest the next time it holds.
  • Cross-posting of photos in repositories managed by AR and NAFAKA projects respectively should be aimed for. It was however noted by members that while AR photos are opens source and use creative commons license 4.0, the NAFAKA policy was no yet clear. Julius and Nassoro to clarify NAFAKA/ACDI-VOCA photo sharing policies and report back to the team at the next meeting.
Upcoming AR-NAFAKA project review & planning meeting[edit | edit source]
  • Jonathan briefed members that the meeting is scheduled to hold on 3-4 July, 2017 in Dar es Salaam. He then explained that for this meeting, the communication team usually supports the event through the following functions:
- Event facilitation.
- Taking notes during the meeting/documenting discussions on the wiki.
- Taking event photos.
- Providing training on an aspect of project communication.
- Writing an overall story about the event afterwards.
- Conducting interviews/gathering profiles of key project personnel.


  • Although they had not been briefed about the upcoming event, Julius and Nassoro to participate in the upcoming meeting and work with AR comms. team to deliver the functions listed above.
  • Jonathan to coordinate with Haroon and Silvanus on the agenda for the event and request to have a capacity building session for project staff attending the meeting. Participants to be trained on ‘how to take good photos when in the field’.
  • A physical communications team meeting to take place on the sidelines of the event.


  • The meeting was adjourned at 11:00 Nigeria time / 13:00 Tanzania time. The next meeting will be held virtually during the week of 5 – 9 June, 2017.