“VET Development in Syunik Marz”

Strategic Development Agency (SDA) NGO in partnership with the Swiss organizations HEKS/EPER (Swiss Church Aid) and HAFL (the School of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences of the Bern University of Applied Sciences) implements a project in Vocational Education and Training (VET) in agriculture in the marz of Syunik in Armenia.

The project offers an opportunity to the Goris Agricultural College and Armenian National Agrarian University (ANAU) Sisian branch (which are the only agricultural institutions in Syunik marz) to develop a practice-oriented VET in the specialties of Animal Health Technologist (AHT) and Milk Technologist (MT) adapted to the local context of Syunik marz in Armenia.

The project contributes to the development of vocational education and advisory services in agriculture by putting in practice innovative approaches and creates a more adapted market-oriented practical education in the field of veterinary, milk processing and delivery of advisory services to farmers.

The project’s focus is on developing the capacities of selected VET colleges (ANAU Sisian branch and Goris Agricultural College) and strengthening the links between VET schools and private sector to provide competence and activity-oriented practical education.

“Livestock Development in the South of Armenia”

This project is the logical continuation of the large-scale “Livestock Development in the Syunik region” Project (2011-2014), implemented by Strategic Development Agency (SDA) and funded by Swiss Agency for Cooperation and Development (SDC). It has been designed based on the previous phase results and achievements, in partnership with the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Emergency Situations of RA, the Ministry of Agriculture of RA, Syunik and Vayotz Dzor Regional Administrations.

The Project is aimed at increasing economic opportunities and incomes of male and female farmers involved in animal husbandry in Syunik and Vayots Dzor regions. It covers 100 rural communities of Syunik and Vayots Dzor regions with a population of about 60,000 people or 14,000 households.

 The main objectives of the project are:

– Improved access of male and female farmers to milk and meat markets through development of sustainable market mechanisms and promotion of linkages between value chain participants.

– Improved capacities of male and female farmers in terms of new approaches and techniques in farming through both: strengthening extension service providers, input and services providers and other market players to advise farmers and training, day-to-day consulting, exchange and information dissemination focused on increased productivity and output.

– Improved access of male and female farmers to farm support services and inputs (veterinary services, Artificial Insemination and breed improvement, agricultural inputs supply etc.) through limited investment initiatives, local capacity building, improved efficiency of provided services, as well as establishment of policy dialogue with relevant state institutions.

– Strengthened capacities of local self-governance bodies to support rural economic development in the issues related to animal husbandry through further strengthening of local/village and regional authorities’ capacity to better perform their functions, respond to farmers’ needs in animal husbandry and establish a policy dialogue with relevant state institutions at upper/national level.

The Project applies M4P (Making Markets Work for the Poor) approach, which aims to promote lasting and sustainable changes in livestock sector in order to increase population income and reduce poverty in the region.

“Boosting competitiveness of regional SMEs”

Strategic Development Agency (SDA) NGO, SME Development National Centre of Armenia (SME DNC), “Spitak-Farmer” NGO (SFA), “Armavir Development Centre” NGO (ADC) and SYUN Consulting-Educational NGO (Syun) since Jan 2017 started implementing the joint initiative “Boosting competitiveness of regional SMEs, as a core precondition for regional economic development”, funded by European Union (EU) Delegation to Armenia, Pilot Regional Development Program (PRDP) – Armenia.

The overall objective of the Action is to boost competitiveness of regional SMEs and create sustainable employment opportunities in Lori (Spitak, Vanadzor, Stepanavan, Tumanyan), Syunik (Sisian, Goris, Tatev) and Armavir (Armavir, Baghramyan, Vagharshapat) marzes of Armenia.

Action leads directly to the following two major results:

–  Creation of at least 60 new sustainable jobs at a local level

–  Increased competitiveness of at least 100 local enterprises

The targeted groups are the following:

–  Young adults (especially qualified and/or unemployed ones) seeking jobs or having viable business ideas ready to start a new business in the three target regions

–  Start-ups (legally operating for up to three years) and operating SMEs having high growth potential (operating in priority sectors of economy defined by the Armenian Development Strategy (ADS) (with particular focus on food processing and tourism), and demonstrating positive economic performance during the last three years)

–  Stakeholders on local level responsible or committed to private sector development: local administrations, business development service providers (NGOs, local employment agencies, business associations, private entities, etc.).

 

“Promoting partnerships for effective work-based learning opportunities in VET”

Strategic Development Agency (SDA) NGO implements EU funded project on piloting the work-based learning model in agricultural vocational education and training (VET) in Syunik and Lori marzes of Armenia.

The project supports Goris and Stepanavan State Agricultural Colleges in strengthening the partnership with private sector by adopting work-based learning (WBL) in Veterinarian and Milk Technologist professions.

The project contributes to the establishment of a sustainable system of vocational education, which is tightly linked to the demand of the labour market. It also creates a replicable model and the respective competency for implementing work-based learning education in other VET institutions of Armenia.

The project’s focus is on developing the capacities of selected VET colleges (Goris and Stepanavan State Agricultural Colleges) and companies/employers in Syunik and Lori marzes through their involvement in the selected professions curricula revision and capacity development trainings to ensure the provision of a comprehensive work-based learning model in professional education.

12