A 14-member team from the Alleviating Poverty and Malnutrition (APM) project participated in the Food Security Dialogue at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada from 30 April to 2 May 2014. The programme was funded by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFTAD) which also supports the APM project under the Canadian International Food Security Research Fund (CIFSRF).
The Dialogue was organized to observe the International Year of Family Farming and attended by CIFSRF funded project partners from Africa, Asia, Canadian universities and International donor and think tank organisations. The Dialogue provided an invaluable experience of under- standing global food security issues and efforts taken by local governments, research institutes and NGOs.
The MSSRF team was invited for four oral presentations and seven poster presentations related to food and nutritional security – the major concerns of the APM project from the three agrobiodiversity hotspots. The talks and posters ranged from community-based institutions, knowledge empowerment of farmers, gender, fishery and wild food. Two posters were appreciated and presented with the Best Poster Awards selected by the jury and the audience. Dr. Madhura Swaminathan, Chairperson MSSRF, delivered a plenary talk on the crisis facing small farming in India.
The project team also attended a Writeshop at Banff, Canada from 4 to 6 May 2014 to enhance their writing skills for scientific audience. The writeshop was a combination of discussion talks and guidance from resource persons. In partnership with UoA, the MSSRF APM team will be bringing out scientific papers shortly on some of the key research outcomes of the APM project.
Apart from the experience of the team members making a visit to Canada to personally engage in the dialogue and workshop, the visit also helped in bonding with research partners, networking with other organizations and institutes and strengthened the team's vision on poverty and malnutrition.