Partners of the Americas’ USAID-funded Farmer-to-Farmer program provides technical assistance to individual farmers, farmer associations, agricultural cooperatives, education institutions, and others in Nicaragua, Guatemala, Haiti and the Dominican Republic, as well as select other countries. Farmer-to-Farmer recruits experienced agriculturalists who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents to complete short-term assignments (15-day minimum stay; trips are generally 2–3 weeks). Farmer-to-Farmer covers all assignment-related expenses.
If you are interested in volunteering with the Farmer-to-Farmer program, please send your resume and all program inquiries to Orli Handmaker at Partners International in Washington, DC, or call (202) 524-6295.
Please see below for a list of all current opportunities.
Specialist in Administration and Accounting (Nicaragua, October 2015: 2 weeks)
The purpose of this assignment is to provide training in accounting/bookkeeping to women and youth in 4 cooperatives in Nueva Guinea. Most of these people don’t have more than secondary education, and in some cases have only completed primary education. Many of them are not doing any basic record keeping with regards to their businesses (cost of production, sales) or their personal budgets (spending, saving). The volunteer will conduct interactive workshops that will strengthen participants’ capacity to record and manage their personal and collective costs, revenue, and profit. This will prove to be a critical skill which will be useful as they begin to market and sell the goods they produce. Their increased ability to keep records will also eventually help F2F better understand their production and personal spending habits, informing assignments that follow. It is expected that at the end of the assignment, participants in all four women’s cooperatives will be able to track their revenue and costs using basic bookkeeping skills, and be able to conduct a basic cost-benefit analysis. The volunteer will have knowledge of basic accounting and administration for microenterprises and farmer associations, experience providing instruction on those subjects, experience working with disadvantaged populations, and Spanish working proficiency. The expected deliverables for the assignment are: the development of a training plan and relevant materials, the development of basic record-keeping tools in Spanish for the women to use after the assignment, workshops on accounting and record-keeping, a trip report and recommendations for further work.
Expert on genetic varieties and rootstock deciduous crops (Guatemala, October-November 2015: 2-4 weeks):
A volunteer is needed with knowledge of new and improved varieties of deciduous fruit that are adaptable to the ecological conditions of Guatemala. The volunteer will train technicians and farmers ANAPDE on methods and techniques of plant breeding to increase production and quality of agricultural products per unit area in little time and with minimal effort and cost. Training should provide information on increasing efficiency of crops by teaching the absorption of nutrients, uses of water, fertilizer and tolerance of certain environmental factors that tend to control extreme fluctuations in yields.
IPM volunteer with Experience with Apples and Stone-fruit (Guatemala, November 2015-February 2016: 2-3 weeks)
An expert in integrated pest management, phytosanitary issues, pest control, and prevention of disease is needed to assist apple, peach, and plum producers to identify and address pest issues that are affecting production. The goals of the assignment are to build the technical skills of apple, peach, and plum tree producers in IPM and overall plant health maintenance of their fruit trees in order to increase production and productivity. The volunteer will also assist the producers in identifying different types of pests and provide recommendations on how to manage those pests. The expected deliverables for the assignment are a phytosanitary instructive manual for the producers, a trip report, and recommendations for further work.
Agronomist, Apples and Stone-fruit (Guatemala, November 2015-February 2016: 2-4 weeks)
An agronomist with experience in addressing production problems caused by late frost and hail, is needed to train apple, peach, and plum producers in techniques and/or active methods to reduce damage from weather and climatic variations. The purpose of the assignment is to train deciduous fruit technicians and farmers on methods and/or techniques to protect plants from damage caused by late frost and hail. Methods could include temperature prediction, weather modification (i.e., fans, heaters, ice nucleating active bacteria, cold air drainage, and microclimates), etc. The expected deliverables for the assignment are: a manual on methods and/or low-cost techniques for freeze protection and weather modification to prevent damage from late frosts and other climate-related problems on deciduous fruit trees, a trip report, and recommendations for further work.
Plant Nutrition and Fertilization Expert for Apples and Stonefruit (Guatemala, November 2015-February 2016: 2-3 weeks)
An expert in plant nutrition and nutrient management is needed to train producers in proper fertilization methods and practices to increase production of apples, peaches and plums. The producers are also interested in identifying methods to reduce input costs while also improving the nutrient management of fruit trees. The purpose of the assignment is to assess current fertilization and nutrient management techniques of apple, peach, and plum producers and provide recommendations on methods and techniques to properly apply correct amounts of nutrients to increase production and reduce costs. The volunteer will also assist producers in developing fertilization and nutrient management plans. The expected deliverables for the assignment are: an instructive manual on nutritional management of deciduous fruit trees for producers’ use, a trip report, and recommendations for further work.
Liquid Compost and Fertilizer Expert (Guatemala, November 2015-February 2016: 2-3 weeks)
An expert in liquid compost and fertilizer with experience using goat urine to make liquid fertilizer or compost is needed to teach technicians in the proper storage and use of goat urine to make liquid fertilizer or compost. The focus of this assignment relates to the use and optimization of the byproducts of goat production, namely goat urine. Technicians at CEPROCAL will be trained in developing liquid fertilizer and compost using goat urine that they can then teach to rural families and beneficiaries of the program to use for the production of vegetables and other crops to supplement and diversify the family diet. At the end of the assignment, CEPROCAL technicians will have learned techniques and methods to use goat urine in the production of liquid fertilizer and compost. They also will know appropriate methods for the application of the compost on crops and proper storage of the goat urine and compost. The expected deliverables other than the training are a trip report and recommendations for further work to be turned in upon completion of the assignment.
Market Analysis Expert (Guatemala, December 2015-March 2016: 2-3 weeks)
F2F is seeking a market intelligence expert with desirable knowledge of potential markets for deciduous and stone fruit markets (primarily plums, peaches, and apples) as well as knowledge of the requirements for exporting. The purpose of this assignment is to assist the technical staff of The National Association of Deciduous Fruit Producers (ANAPDE) to conduct a market analysis and help them identify their main needs and capacity as a production center in order to be able to export to the U.S. This will help inform their strategic direction. The volunteer will also assist producers in identifying new potential markets for the long-term and, time permitting, potential marketing strategies that producers can use in order to best achieve their goals of exporting to the U.S. ANAPDE seeks to assist producers in increasing their volume of sales through exporting to the U.S. and/or identifying new markets through the market analysis. The volunteer will also build the capacity within small agribusinesses to be able to make sound decisions based on market information. The expected deliverables for the assignment are a market analysis that helps to determine whether it is feasible to export deciduous and stone fruit based on costs and volume, a trip report, and recommendations for further work.
Post-Harvest Fruit Handling Expert (Guatemala, December 2015-March 2016: 2-3 weeks)
F2F is seeking an expert agronomist who can train producers in new and improved techniques for deciduous fruit post-harvest handling and storage. The main purpose of this assignment is to train technicians and farmers at The National Association of Deciduous Fruit Producers (ANAPDE) on methods and/or related technologies and procedures used in post-harvest handling and storage of deciduous fruits. Farmers and technicians are interested in learning techniques involved in handling these products, as well as gaining a greater understanding of the physiological features of the fruit as it matures and before it is served as food in order to best ensure that it is picked, processed, and stored in such a manner that it best preserves its quality. Participants in these trainings will include all those who have some responsibility in the management of deciduous fruits, including farmers, technical personnel responsible for collection and storage centers, and extension agents in charge of training programs in the area. By training the team of researchers, planners, and farmers at ANAPDE to improve techniques and procedures currently used in the handling and storage of agricultural products, this will help reduce the substantial post-harvest food losses in collection centers and packing that are needed to maintain the quality and safety of fresh deciduous fruit and processed. The expected deliverables are: a manual on methods and/or related technologies and procedures used in harvesting, processing and storage of fruits and pests that attack them, methods for control and quality factors involved in their management techniques and marketing, a trip report, and recommendations for further work.
Apple and Stone Fruit Grafting/Nursery Specialist (Guatemala, December 2015-March 2016: 2-3 weeks)
F2F is seeking an agronomist with experience in grafting who is familiar with different fruit varieties and cultivars. The volunteer should have knowledge of new and improved varieties of deciduous and stone-fruit species that are adaptable to the ecological conditions of Guatemala as well as knowledge of new and improved varieties of rootstock suitable for deciduous and stone fruit the agro-ecological conditions of Guatemala. The purpose of the assignment is to train local extension agents, researchers and farmers at ANAPDE in grafting and other plant propagation methods to increase quantity and quality of apples, plums, and peaches per unit area. The volunteer will also provide information regarding new varieties and high-quality cultivars. Farmers are specifically interested in cultivars that will allow them to produce the most fruit in the smallest possible area of land and, if possible, will help improve plant resistance or tolerance to damage from pests and diseases, drought, heat, cold, wind or other negative factors. The hope is that at the end of the assignment, researchers, planners, and farmers at The National Association of Deciduous Fruit Producers (ANAPDE) will have greater understanding of the different varieties (a list will be provided) of apples and stone fruits that can help to stabilize production and improve plant resistance/tolerance to damage from pests and diseases, drought, and other factors that may cause fluctuations in yield. The expected deliverables for the assignments are trainings and manuals on the aforementioned topics, a trip report, and recommendations for further work.
Marketing Strategy and Sales Management Expert (Haiti, October-December 2015: 2-4 weeks)
Small Holder Poultry Enterprise (SHPE) is a business led by a faith-based organization called Kindness, Opportunity, Resources and Education (KORE). SHPE’s end goal is to empower farmers by helping them to start their own small businesses – specifically focused raising 6 weeks potential broilers. KORE seeks to reinforce their marketing strategy and management because producers haven’t found a balance between the amount of output and the amount being sold. A professional expert in marketing and sales management in developing countries will help KORE to establish a successful marketing and sales strategy, train producers in managing their marketing operations, and demonstrate how to adopt innovation in the value chain. The trainings will help producers identify problems and potential solutions for their business and enable them to better manage their business. The goal is for the trainees to gain a better understanding of the value chain, marketing systems, cost analysis, and balancing sales and production. The volunteer should have experience in marketing and sales management, working with and analyzing varied marketing systems, developing KPIs, building capacity, working with people in developing nations of varying literacy levels, and leading interactive trainings. Additionally, the volunteer should be easily adaptable to new environments and should have a working knowledge of French. The expected deliverables of the assignment are an analysis of the production of broilers, marketing system and sales, trainings on marketing systems and sales management, a trip report, and recommendations for further work.
Coffee Harvesting and Processing Educator (Haiti, October-December 2015: 2-3 weeks)
The purpose of this assignment is to observe and to help facilitate the wet processing procedures of several coffee cooperatives in Haiti. The volunteer will be able to analyze practices that are already in place and make recommendations, train on best practices, and offer a management plan for future wet processing of coffee beans. The volunteer may also observe natural (dry) coffee processing carried out by other cooperatives. The volunteer will give trainings through which participants will: be educated on practices relating to management of wet processing coffee beans, review quality control and the effects on the beans during wet processing phase, and build or develop a protocol for washed coffee processing. This practical and hands-on training assignment is designed to help improve the wet processing practices for coffee beans. The volunteer will work alongside in-country team to analyze current practices and then train field workers on best wet processing practices, quality control, and coffee bean management. This volunteer will help co-ops develop outreach/education tools to disseminate the information to other farmers around the country. The volunteer should have experience in coffee production, wet processing and/or management, adequate knowledge on best practices for coffee production, experience leading trainings, good interpersonal communication and presentation skills and ability to work with groups of varying literacy levels, the ability to quickly adapt to new working environments where resources are sometimes low, and be comfortable working with interpreters. The expected deliverables are an analysis and overview of wet processing practices that are already used by coffee co-ops in Haiti, hands on training on best practices relating to wet processing coffee beans as well as improvements that can be made in Haiti (trainings should include a review of how to manage the beans and quality control of the beans), a trip report, and recommendations for further work.
Bilingual climate change expert (Dominican Republic, December 2015: 2-3 weeks)
A climate change specialist, or team of specialists, who can identify the main impacts of climate change on the agricultural and forestry sector in the DR and who can develop mitigation and adaptation strategies at the farm, community, and municipality level is needed to conduct presentations and trainings on climate change and its impact with new strategic partners of the Farmer-to-Farmer program. Upon raising awareness of the need for producers to adapt to the effects of climate change, the volunteer will then provide recommendations on climate-smart agricultural technologies or techniques that the producers can adopt in order to increase their resilience to climate change. Strong proficiency in Spanish is required.