Christopher Radcliffe on permanent return to Australia

Farewelling Chris at the Pekoa International Airport 4 Sep 17

The Vanuatu Agriculture College (VAC) is sad to lose its dedicated and hardworking Curriculum Development Consultant, Mr Christopher Radcliffe (Chris for short), on permanent return to Australia. Chris began employment with the VAC on the 1st of February 2016 and ended his services on the 1st of September 2017. Chris came to Vanuatu with his beautiful wife Joanne, who served as a doctor at the Northern Provincial Hospital, and 2 lovely daughters Madeline (8) and Holly (6).

The value of the work that Chris has brought to bear at VAC cannot be fully appreciated without a proper understanding of the complex but unnecessary technical hurdles that VAC is expected to overcome in order to be registered and have its courses accredited with the Vanuatu Qualifications Authority. Despite the challenges, Chris proved himself to be of a very high calibre in terms of his professional conduct and negotiation skills. With Chris on board, VAC has deployed Level 4 Certificates on the Vanuatu Qualifications Framework and has in place diploma programs with plans to be rolled out in 2018.

Chris has supported and guided staff in the redesign of the curriculum, upskilled staff in the areas of teaching and learning, developed strategies for marketing and improving student outcomes as well as the role of Acting CEO from time to time. As a core member of the management team, Chris provided guidance and wisdom in key decisions regarding the operation of the college. On the social aspect of his life, Chris proved to be an open and outgoing person. He actively participated in various social activities of the college as well as for the Luganville community and also worked with local communities on various farming skills on weekends.

We farewell Chris with our best wishes for the future.

Lukim yu Chris mo famili blong yu.

Community Outreach Programme for VAC Livestock Farm and Cert 1 Livestock and Aquaculture Trainees

Vanuatu Agriculture College Livestock Farm and Livestock and Aquaculture Students help
put up a Poultry Layer-Vegetable-Root Crop-Aquaculture Farm at Bumbua High School, on
the outskirt of Luganville, Santo.

The project is a Community Outreach Programme initiated by the VAC Livestock Farm and
involves Certificate 1 Students of Livestock and Aquaculture. The Programme provides
Bumbua High School with technical advice and labour. It also provides participating students
with the technical skills and knowledge they would need to farm Poultry and freshwater fish
at smallholder scale.

Students participating in this programme were introduced to an alternative system of
farming, which is called ‘integrated farming system’. The system we have designed and are
putting up at Bumbua High School combine Poultry Layer with Vegetables, Root Crops and
Aquaculture.

The system is based on recycling of waste energy. In its simplest form, energy from the Crop
Components (Vegetable and Root Crops) will be used to help run the Poultry and
Aquaculture Components. Waste energy from poultry waste and nutrient enriched waste
water (fish pond) will help run the Crop Components.
Energy will not be wasted. Energy from one component will be used by the next
component.

This system of farming is ideal for farmers with limited or have small area of land available
for farming. It is quite an efficient system if it is properly designed. It addresses a number of
production and environmental problems. By recycling the energy produced by each of the
components, the system will help reduce the amount of pollution the farm generates. It
does this by converting waste into useable products. In this case, waste energy is converted
into chicken, vegetable, root crop and fish energy instead of being damped into the
environment.

Integrated farming suits Bumbua High School. Unlike many of the middle and high schools in
and around the outskirt of Luganville, Bumbua is small and is only beginning to find its
footing. It is the aim of the Principal of the High School that produces from the small scale
farm supplement the students’ diet. Surplus would be sold to the community and provide
an alternative source of income for the school.

Former student obtains scholarship to study in China

Berthier Tevanu, a former student from the Vanuatu Agriculture College (VAC) has been awarded a 6-years scholarship to the Nanjing Agricultural University in China from September 2018 to July 2022. He will studying Chinese language training from September 2017 to July 2018 before moving to the Bachelors Degree in Animal Science program at this university. Berthier completed his Level 2 and 3 certificates at VAC in 2014 and 2015 respectively.

Berthier hails from Norsup in Malekula. He has attained Year 13 of secondary education at the Rensarie College in the Southeast of Malekula. Back in 2015 Berthier was also nominated by the VAC staff for 1 month of training and exposure in China.

VAC is proud to have another of its students awarded such a scholarship especially in high demand areas such as in animal science. 

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