By: Nafisah Awang
SERDANG, August 30 – The University Community Transformation Centre (UCTC), Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) assisted the National Anti-Drugs Agency (NADA) teaching staff to enhance their vocational skills through a skills development course.
This was the first network and collaboration between UCTC UPM and NADA, and it focused on technical training in the field of agriculture and noodle production.
The four-day course with the theme “Tanam Sayur Jauhi Dadah” (Plant trees and avoid drugs) was held in UPM and was attended by 24 NADA staff from several Narcotics Addiction Rehabilitation Centres (PUSPEN).
Director of UCTC, Prof. Dr. Mansor Abu Talib, said the programme was an effort towards enhancing skills and ensuring that right teaching techniques are able to be delivered to clients.
The course incorporated the elements of effective change agents through the learning outcome technique delivered by Prof. Dr. Mansor and Deputy Director of UCTC, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Mohd Nizam Osman.
The sharing session was based on the results and holistic analysis of research conducted by UPM.
The entire course adopted a practical approach. For instance, in the vegetable production course, UPM had provided empty plots for participants to grow their vegetables from the beginning to the harvesting stage.
The hands-on approach was more attractive for the learners to gain deeper knowledge, not to get bored easily, and to have real experience with their clients using the right growing techniques.
The participants were given exposure to seed germination, preparation of raised beds, sapling transplant techniques, direct seeding techniques, irrigation, fertilization, and management and control of pesticides.
The module prepared by UPM was infused with the elements of farming therapy which become the basis for the participants, and this activity could be a therapeutic treatment for patients to recover.
Apart from the main topic on vegetable production management, various topics of interest were also covered in this course. The participants were taught how to prepare effective microorganism (EM), make compost and perform fruit breeding.
In regard to compost making, two techniques were introduced: wet compost and dry compost. The produce of both composts could be used as a growing medium and a source of crop fertilizer. For fruit breeding techniques, the participants had the chance to graft a durian tree after the demonstration of the grafting technique and tut durian tree.
The teaching staff was comprised of staff from the Vegetable Section, University Agriculture Park (TPU), UPM and agriculture officers from UCTC.
NADA staff had also provided input and shared their experiences with clients in the rehabilitation centre.
The aspect of entrepreneurship was also included to ensure that the production of vegetables could be a source of income.
Agriculture Officer, Nafisah Awang, who is also the programme coordinator, said the course was not a one-off programme as it would be continued, and UCTC UPM wanted to ensure the programme met its objective.
UCTC UPM will monitor PUSPEN involved in the vegetable and noodle production courses to assist clients and to ensure that the objective is achieved. - UPM
Date of Input: 21/10/2019 | Updated: 21/10/2019 | hairul_nizam
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