ICT4Ag Conference – My Experience

Social Reporter
Social Reporter

I remember when I received the email, notifying me that I was selected as an onsite social reporter at the ICT4Ag.  I was in the office at the time and for awhile I froze and just stared at the computer screen in shock because this was a dream come true. This training program was the opportunity that I had been praying for, a chance to enhance my skills and equip myself with the knowledge to take my career to another level. There aren’t enough words to express the euphoria I felt at that moment.

Training Session
Training Session

Onsite social reporters were given a two (2) day workshop before the conference.This workshop provided me with formal training to effectively use social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook, and Hootsuite. By nature, I am a shy person. Even my online persona tends to be shy; I know that sounds weird but its true. What Pier and Nawsheen thought me wasn’t just how to use the tools to engage the audience but how to express myself with them as well. I went from 30 something followers before the training sessions to 99 at the end of the conference.

Every day new articles, blog post and publications are made on the subject of Information and Communication Technology for Agricultural Development (ICT4Ag) but with my new skills, I know that I will now be better equipped to share my views on the subject. To leave my mark in cyberspace. Don’t just take my word for it, Pier’s post on tracking reach and understanding engagement gives an excellent breakdown on the impact social media had on the conference. 

Rwanda
Rwanda

Our host, the Republic of Rwanda is famously known as the ‘land of a thousand hills’. I couldn’t image how beautiful those hills would be until I saw them in person.  What I saw in the media’s before the event didn’t aptly reflect all that Rwanda has to offer. Every time I stepped out of my hotel I fell a little more in love with the country. The Rwandans, themselves were very outgoing and courteous. They made it easy for me to feel comfortable being so far away from my homeland.

I will admit the language and climate differences did take some adjustment, but it only served to make my experience a memorable one. I went to the conference expecting to learn more about Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and network with others in the field but instead, as Nawsheen puts it we all became More family than team

What Next
What Next

Upon my return home I was plagued with the question “what next”. My personal goal is not to waste the opportunity that was granted to me but to use those skills to help my country. Having completed the social media training and participation in the conference I can now respond efficiently to any issue related to my field of knowledge. Additional, I hope to contribute something new and relevant to the development of the Trinidad and Tobago’s agriculture industry.

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12 thoughts on “ICT4Ag Conference – My Experience

  1. A great introduction into what can be described as my journey to enlightenment regarding ICT4Ag, as this concept is still new to me, but from your post I am intrigued and I look forward to learning more about it and your ideas regarding how it can be applied and integrated into the Trinidad and Tobago context!! Writing style is clear, warm, open and personable so clearly you have utilised the tools and skills learned to attract this reader!!! Good Luck Enricka and I look forward to more posts from you!!

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  2. Let me first start by saying congratulations on being part of the team ICT4Ag. I know how passionate you are in this field and it is also a great opportunity to express your views to the world. I’m sure your visit to Rwanda is just the beginning and stepping stone to your career and there will be many more experiences to come which you would share with us. So praise to social media, in this day and age, makes life and learning much easier.

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  3. Social media activities are very facinating, based on this testimony, Young people no matter their disciplines must consider social media tools as their main communication channel.
    Congratulation Enricka for this post and we are all happy to known that through ICT4ag conference, your social media reporting dream become a reallity. hoping that we will meet and work together during other occassion. Also share this experience with other YPARDians in your country.
    Best wishes

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    • Hey Ngouambe,
      It was great working with you, your excitement and engergy for youth and ICT was indeed an encouragement to me. I am sharing with my countrymen about YPARD, CTA and the ARDYIS Project. As much as I learn I share, this is the only way for change to occur.

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  4. Sound like you had a great experience. Based on this blog, I’m looking forward to more intriguing writings from you. Do keep up the good work and trust me, there is lots to talk about in agri 4 development forum. Peace.

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  5. I remember how i kept reading all the blog posts coming out of the conference whenever i wanted to file them in on delicious as a remote reporter. Two things occurred to me, first was a reminder of my GCARD2 Social media experience in Uruguay and second was the realization of what a fantastic job you all were doing out there, Usually i was just to copy the title of the posts but usually i am unaware of when i read the entire post. Enricka i am sure you will do a better job in 2014. Let keep the flag flying….All the best

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    • Thank you Olawaleojo for the words of encourgement. The contribution of the remote social reporters was what made our job so fantastic. You guys were instrumental in disseminating the information. I am sure we will both do amazing things in 2014.

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  6. Great post here Enricka, I share the same sentiments with you regarding how you felt when you got the news of the ICT4Ag conference in Kigali. The experience was wonderful, my own what next is to promote Youth supporting their Family farms across the world through blogging and promoting them on social media Networks.

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    • Thank you for your contribution Kalusam. I will gladly support you in your “what’s next” for 2014. I expect great things from us and the other team members in the years to come.

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