Milos van Leest
Young Expert at Ecopolis Europa - Kenya
YEP period 2020 - 2022, batch 21
Training- and agro-enterprise ecosystem developer.
Ecopolis Europa is a Dutch-based consultancy company that focuses on the capacity building of organizations, companies, institutions, and communities in the areas of agriculture, organizational development, urban planning, and sustainable development. The company has a record of operating globally (Asia, Europe, Africa, South America), however is now more aimed towards eastern Africa. Ecopolis Europa further collaborates with Kilimo Kisasa Ltd. Kilimo Kisasa Ltd is a highland farm in Zombo district, Uganda that hopes to produce (seed) potatoes and aspires to function as a role model farm in the region. Last year (2020), KK, in collaboration with Ecopolis Europa, initiated the development of a training centre named the Kilimo Kisasa Training centre. This centre will primarily focus on the development and implementation of practice-based training of national, regional, and local partners and their own staff.
As a young expert, I am active as a (vocational, practice-based) training developer and agro-enterprise ecosystem initiator at the Ecopolis Arua branch in Uganda. My main role is to support Kilimo Kisasa (KK) Training Center in its institutional development, training development, and training output. Moreover, I am active in supporting Ecopolis in its daily operations, strategic development, and innovative agro-development.
More concretely, I assist the KK and Ecopolis teams to update and refine the existing approach to agro-enterprise ecosystem development in the Albertine highlands, including an inventory of ecosystem members and roles. Next to that, I give support in formalizing, improving, and structuring existing on-farm skills training and develop and implement practical pilots for skills and competence training to agro-enterprise ecosystem members and partners.
Within the future framework of agro-enterprise development, I have to identify motivated existing and aspiring local non-farm agro-enterprise ecosystem members who (could) deliver critical services and determine their skills needs as well as the training, coaching, and business support possibilities. In line with that, I will assist in establishing a policy, structure, and organization of (co-)funding of the training, coaching, and business support to agro-enterprise ecosystem members.
I will be/am based in Arua town and Zombo district within West-Nile subregion, Uganda. From here I will work closely with Jua Dai Fleer, a batch 20 YEP-er. My contract will end in August 2022.
Training development and implementation
Teaching and guiding
Technical thinking and writing
Analytical and critical thinking
Multi-skilled and broad oriented (generalist)
Quick learner if it comes to practical work and infield application of innovations
Detailed worker: an eye for detail
Handy and resourceful
Education: MSc Development and Rural Innovation, BSc of Applied Science Management of the Living Environment & Rural Renewal, MBO-3 Vakbekwaam Medewerker Bos exploitatie Bos- en Natuur-beheer
Experience before YEP
- Team leader public greenspace management (Vd Haar Groep Wekerom)
- Technical advisor in capacity building for Ugandan based tailor-made training and refresher courses (Ecopolis Europa, Uganda)
- Over the past 20 years, I have worked in forestry (tree worker), farming (piggery, veal, poultry), plumbing, carpentry, green space management, training, and advice.