Cours de Formation Generale pour Adultes Ruraux
|Henri de Laulanie, SJ|
Cours de Formation Generale pour Adultes Ruraux (CFGR), for adult education of farmers, has since 1981 raised the education level of farmers in Madagascar. It was founded by the Jesuit priest Henri de Laulanie, who is also known for discovering a System of Rice Intensification which spread worldwide.
Laulanié graduated from National Agricultural Institute (INA) in Paris in 1938 and arrived in Madagascar in 1961, remaining there until his death in 1995. He strove to raise the spirit of farmers, imparting an attitude toward work adapted to the realities of rice farming in the Malagasy countryside. He founded his agricultural school in 1981, to train rural youth and adults to be proud of their peasant identity and rural origins. This was in response to the curriculum in other such schools which he believed to be insensitive to the farmers' difficult situation.
CFGR, in line with Catholic church teaching, strives to raise social awareness and living standards through training young farmers. The school also offers correspondence courses for adults who lacked the opportunity for an education.
Laulanié had earlier taught agriculture at the Institut National d'Horticulture et de Paysage in Angers, France. After arriving in Madagascar he set to work on devising courses suited to the local farmers, and implemented his vision through CFGR after 19 years of experience, devising a course plan that included physics, chemistry, economics, and sociology. He had acquired experience for such an effort while in Angers, training those released from military service to pass the entrance exam at the university. His discovery of SRI did not come until 1983-84, and was publicized in his book Rice in Madagascar. Though newspaper coverage is sparse in Madagascar, the work of this centre has received notice.
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