n Ergonomics SA : Journal of the Ergonomics Society of South Africa - Roles of farmer trainers for participatory ergonomics in agriculture : research article

Volume 17, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1010-2728



A new package for training farmers in making ergonomics improvement in daily work life was developed and applied in four provinces in Vietnam. The training package was based on the WIND (Work Improvement in Neighbourhood Development) methodology for participatory training of farmers in low-cost improvements learnt from local good practices. The package consisted of local good examples, an action checklist, an illustrated guide, planning and reporting sheets. Core instructors, trained by a 10-day course, organized two-day workshops for farmer trainers in cooperation with local project support committees comprising labour, health agencies and farmers' associations. These farmer trainers then guided farmers through group work involving neighbourhood farmers. This two-stage training programme led to many low-cost improvements in materials storage and handling, workstation design, machine safety, control of hazard sources, welfare facilities and environmental protection. The results were facilitated by; (a) presenting local good examples in these six technical areas, (b) emphasizing low-cost ideas locally available, and (c) small group discussions on practicable improvements. Presentation of basic ergonomics principles with the help of photographs showing local examples was found useful. Experiences in the four provinces confirmed that farmer trainers, when guided to use an action-oriented training package, could enable farmers to make many low-cost improvements learned from local good practices.

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