Advancing Resilient Family Farming towards a “new normal”: ComDev Asia virtual consultation to craft a communication campaign

Advancing Resilient Family Farming towards a “new normal”: ComDev Asia virtual consultation to craft a communication campaign

ComDevAsia (CDA) conducted a virtual consultation with partner organizations on June 11 to prioritize and validate key messages, themes, and priorities of the communication campaign on resilient family farming beyond COVID-19 within the framework of the United Nations Decade of Family Farming (UNDFF 2019-28).

The campaign is part of the CDA Participatory Communication Plan and will have two streams: awareness raising on the role of family farming for resilient food systems for the general public, including governments and the private sector; and information-sharing on relevant issues for family farmers. The general awareness activities will integrate the use of social media and web sites, while the messages for the family farmers will be shared through public service announcements via community radios in 13 Asian countries.

Key messages of the campaign focus on six interrelated themes: health and nutrition; sanitation and safety; economics and food systems; biodiversity, environment, and culture; policies, services, and organization; and gender and youth. The core message of the campaign aims to make visible the role of family farmers as front-liners in the global fight against COVID-19. Resilient family farming is essential to building a “new normal” and implies establishing conducive policies and investments to support small-holders and their well-being.  The campaign will encourage governments to acknowledge family farmers as primary partners in planning for the “new normal.” This entails for the government to support family farmers through inclusive services, including rural communication services, and capacity building. In addition, the campaign will aim for the private sector’s fair investment in family farming activities and product procurement from family farmers. The private sector’s expertise will also help family farmers enhance their knowledge and capacity.

Key messages for family farmers will focus on sanitation and safety, health, gender equality, best practices in the supply and value chain processes, and empowerment. The campaign will also highlight the need for family farmers to organize and act concertedly to ensure participation in end-to-end agricultural and market processes.

The virtual consultation to craft the communication campaign was attended by the members from the Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development, AMARC Asia-Pacific, and the University of the Philippines Los Baños College of Development Communication, Digital Green and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

The author wishes to thank Mr. John Mervin Embate and Dr. Stella Tirol for their inputs.

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