His Accomplishments Go On . . .
Christopher Dowswell was aide-de-camp to Nobel Laureate Dr. Norman E. Borlaug for more than 30 years. He joined the Sasakawa Africa Funds for Extension Education (SAFE) and the Sasakawa Africa Association (SAA) in 1991 and was appointed joint Executive Director in 2009. Chris worked tirelessly for SAFE's objective of supporting smallholder farmers and particularly agricultural extension. The Fund provides scholarships for degree training in Agricultural Extension, especially for women.
Chris made an immeasurable contribution to SAA over many years. He will be dearly missed - but his vision for the future will remain and his work will go on.
- Hon Professor Ruth Oniang'o, Sasakawa Africa Association Chairperson
Why do Women Need Scholarship Support?
Agricultural Extension personnel in Africa need updated training to better assist local farmers to increase production and incomes. In many cultures, women are unable to meet directly with the men that make up the vast majority of extension workers. A World Bank study estimated that only 5% of female farmers have direct access to agricultural advisory services. Therefore rural farm women often remain poorly informed about production technology and practices, even though they play a primary role in agricultural production.
What is the Special Value of Educating Women?
Increasing education levels of agricultural extension workers will improve the transfer of knowledge and skill to farmers leading to increased production and incomes. Increasing the number of well-trained female agricultural extension workers will provide female farmers greater access to agricultural technologies and production information. Focusing on female extension workers also provides role models for girls to enter agricultural extension and further increasing the number of women.
In the long term, more farmers will have access to better agricultural technology and production information which will increase agricultural production and incomes, and reduce poverty and hunger. Also, more women active in agricultural extension will provide role models for young women and girls to follow into the field, increasing the number of women extension agents and further expanding the impact of the scholarships.
What are the Details of the Scholarship?
The scholarships provide about 50% of the estimated stipend, and research support for up to three years for a BSc degree in Agricultural Extension (Ethiopia, Mali, Nigeria, or Tanzania) and up to 2 years for a Diploma degree (only available in Mali). This amounts to an annual support of USD 1,600 for BSc. Scholars and USD 1,100 for Diploma scholars. Winrock will make scholarship payments once per six months (twice annually). The support can be used for any study related expenses including tuition, examination fees, research expenses, laptops and/or living expenses. All scholarships are subject to satisfactory academic progress.