PRESS RELEASE “THE THIRD BIENNIAL RASSEA 2023” Webinar in Conjuction With RASSEA Meeting

RASSEA is an organization part of the GFRAS network, which is a Sub Regional network that enables multi stakeholders in extension education/RAS to engage and support for the betterment of extension education/RAS towards the sustainability of agri-food in South East Asia.

Since its establishment in 2019, RASSEA has endeavored to provide support and advocacy in the implementation of agricultural extension in Southeast Asia through various meetings and formulation of recommendations for countries as part of country fora as well as recommendations that can be implemented regionally.

RASSEA has developed a strategic plan for 2021-2030 as an operational plan which will also use as a monitoring system that will support program and action planning, measure changes and developments in extension/RAS. in the RASSEA strategic Plan it is stated that RASSEA provide forum exchange or sharing of knowledge and experiences, processing data and information, promoting innovation and lesson learnt among the member countries in extension/RAS. So this webinar and meeting is important as an effort to share experiences as well as prepare recommendations regarding extension/RAS.

  1. Youth in Agriculture by Laras Salsabila, Sustainable Development Practice/Post Graduate Student at University of Florida

The role of youth in agriculture is very important as a successor in preparing future food for this reason, it is necessary to have strategies and policies that are conducive so that young people are interested in doing business in the agricultural sector by develop holistic youth development program and Simplify regulatory processes as well as to create a one-stop platform for all agricultural business needs. At the empowerment side, involving youth in agriculture sector should be provide and develop a curriculum that aligns with current agricultural trends and demands for specialized training sessions, webinars, or workshops on agri-tech, sustainable farming, and agri-business management

  • Integration Nutrition in Extension and Advisory Service by Dr. Virginia Cardenas, APIRAS Board Member and GFRAS Focal Point.

Improving nutrition is at the core of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agenda 2: Zero Hunger. It meant that food security, nutrition and agriculture are part of the same global agenda. SDG 2 encourages the world to end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture. In line with the purpose of extension/RAS which encompasses all activities aimed to providing information and services needed by farmers and other actors in rural settings, which assist them in developing their own technical, organizational, and management skills and practices so as to improve their livelihoods and well-being.  The integration of nutrition in RAS is important because it is necessary to raise awareness for all parties, both for farmers as producers of quality food to women who will process nutritious food. For that sake it will be requires a strong and comprehensive policy because it is not only from the agricultural side but also from the health side and also law enforcement especially to get fair food for the people.

The RASSEA 3rd Biennial Meeting discussed follow-ups that would be carried out by both the country fora and RASSEA as regional networking. As an introduction to the discussion, start with the presentation delivered by:

  1. Dr. Siti Amanah as chairperson of RASSEA
  2. Dr. Arlene Flores as the Philipines Country fora chairperson
  3. Prof. Dr. Noorsida Man as country Fora chairperson of Malaysia
  4. Dr. Johan David Wetik as country fora chairperson for Indonesia

The discussion at the RASSEA 3rd  Biennial Meeting conducted by each presenter conveyed the potentials and constraints in developing the organization both in each country and regionally. 

In general, the problems faced by country fora concern to governance and organizations that are still not sustainable, support from stakeholders that needs to be increased, as well as adequate financial support for the implementation of activities in accordance with plans that have been develop. However, all country forums agree that the activities carried out have very positive impact in developing extensions/RAS in each respective country for strengthening the food and nutrition system through an approach that prioritizes community empowerment.

The meeting resulted in several points of following agreement was obtained:

  1. Maintaining program and activities include RASSEA website as information and communication virtual platform
  2. Strengthening country fora in providing support or recommendations for implementing extensions/RAS in each respective country
  3. Conduct join program of RAS in South East Asia on matters of capacity building, poverty alleviation, gender mainstreaming to improve the quality of extension/RAS for developing better food and nutrition policy.
  4. Identify champion figures who can pushed  organizations to the next level that have leadership and integrity
  5. Strengthening network with potential partner in developing extension/RAS
  6. Identify opportunities to obtain sustainable funding sources by fund raising and resources mobilization

The next 4th RASSEA meeting in 2025 will be proposed hosted by the Phillipines/Phileasnet.

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