It is important to remember that Ag extentionist are aggies not nutritionist. Not to say there is not some room for general information on IYCN practices but all messages should be "housed" in terms they understand. Our goal is not to turn them into nutritionist any more than we as nutritionist will become aggies. rather they need to know some basics and then know who to contact for more information. This is why cross collaboration is extremely important. Ag extentionist like CHW's are over burdened and we should not be adding to their work load but rather going along side them to deliver messages.
ACDI/VOCA has developed and is piloting some messages on diet diversity, intercropping, micronutrients, breastfeeding, that are housed with ag messages. for example if talking about micronutrients you compare them to how fertilizers make your crops strong and health the same way micronutrients make your children grow strong and health. It is important to remember that Ag extentionist work with farmers, who may or may not be direct care givers. We need to put those messages in terms they understand.
In the same way we as nutritionist should be engaging ag extentionist in working with households on kitchen gardens. We can share what crops will meet the micronutrients deficiencies in the area but Ag Extentionist are best trained to create a planting schedule to have those crops available year round. In addition they can provide training on ways to plant so that it reduces the work load for the women, hence not taking time away from caring practices.
So remember your target beneficiaries. If you are in a traditional value chain program the beneficiaries are farmers and the messages should be given in a context that relates to them.
Collaboration is key across sectors. Bring a nutritionist to an ag training and involve aggies in agriculture training at the household level. Don't try to turn the other into an expert in your field of expertise.