Chief Executive Officer of the Guyana Livestock Development Authority (GLDA), Nigel Cumberbatch said the drop box system established in 2017 has been a major success in helping the agency to deliver services of a higher quality and in a timelier basis to stakeholders in the livestock industry.
“Our monitoring programme enables us to ascertain from the livestock farming community how well they are progressing in relation to production parameters being met and their dreams being realised. Meaning, we are better able to assess [in a timely manner] whether the farms are financially viable or not,” Cumberbatch explained.
Additionally, Cumberbatch told the Department of Public Information (DPI), in a recent interview that the GLDA is now working with other agencies to implement and strengthen their monitoring and evaluation systems for better delivery of services across the public sector.
“As a result of the establishment of our monitoring and evaluation system and the way in which the system is working we have been invited by a number of other programmes, including the Ministry of Finance, to explain in more detail the way our system is working and to assist some of those programmes in ensuring that their monitoring and evaluation system could be improved,” the GLDA Head added.
Further, Cumberbatch noted the ability to effectively monitor and evaluate what is happening on farms and livestock production as a whole. This is critical to providing time sensitive and accurate data to strengthen the sector even as the country remains self-sufficient in its production.
“You cannot improve what you cannot measure, or you cannot improve what is not measured. So, at the GLDA we would’ve had to change the type of delivery of extension and say to the people that we have in the field, we need you to go and we need you to begin to start measuring the production parameters from the districts, and in so doing to report it back to us so that we can utilise that information to make a determination, as to what really needs to be improved so that the animal production system can be improved. Therefore, in order to assist us, we have to be able to measure the production that we are getting from the districts, from the field, from the farmers, to be able to improve the system so that we can get from those animals the maximum production…” Cumberbatch explained.
Through the drop box system, technicians and extension agents provide production data of the livestock enterprises of the farmers. This information is then analysed and advice is sent back to the extension agents so that systems on the farm can be improved.