The 26th Annual ECHO®

International Agriculture Conference

November 19-21, 2019

Fort Myers, Florida

Early Bird Registration

The ECHO® International Agriculture Conference

Why Attend?

Every year, this event brings together influential voices dedicated to eradicating hunger and improving lives through agriculture and community development. Speakers share practical solutions to agricultural challenges, personal experiences, and strategies for improving the lives of millions who daily face food insecurity. Our conference offers an open exchange of information, connecting the people and ideas that can make a real and sustainable difference.

Who Should Attend?

This conference will especially benefit current or aspiring international agricultural development workers. At this conference, you will get to network with professionals who share your context and your passions!

  • Short-term or career missionaries
  • National community leaders and farmers
  • Leaders of development/relief-oriented organizations
  • University undergraduate, graduate students and professors
  • International project volunteers (e.g. Peace Corps)
When
Tuesday - Thursday November 19-21, 2019

With optional post-event workshops on Friday, November 22.

Where
Fort Myers, Florida ECHO Global Farm & Crowne Plaza
Register Now
26th Annual Event

This year, we are excited to announce a very special lineup of speakers that you will get to hear from in our morning plenary sessions, afternoon workshops, and evening breakout sessions. Our speakers represent academics, professors, and practitioners in agriculture development.

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Appropriate Technology Fair

Exciting Appropriate Technology Fair at this year's annual event!

    Appropriate Technology is a common interest amoung our network. This year, we want to highlight organizations who are involved in the work of Appropriate Technology.

    Wednesday morning, explore a selection of technology being used and promoted by organizations who are part of ECHO's network. During this time, organizations will share about thier appropriate technologies and answer questions.

    Walk around the fair to ideas will spark at new ways you can use appropriate technology in your work!

    Other Events at this year's conference:

    • Roland Bunch's Book Signing
    • Topic Tables during lunch
    • Recruiting lunch: a time for job seekers to connect with organizations

Below you'll find the schedule for the 2019 ECHO International Agriculture Conference. We'll keep this page regularly updated with all new speakers and sessions.

7:00 AM 8:00 AM

Breakfast & Late Registration

Check-in for those who do not arrive on Monday.
Breakfast at the hotel is complementary for guests staying at the Crowne Plaza Hotel.


9:00 AM 9:45 AM

Reconciling Conservation and Development in a Changing World

Ben Lowe

Many of the most vulnerable human communities around the world are located in some of the most vulnerable or degraded ecosystems. As the impacts of climate and environmental change continue to grow, how can we flourish together on God’s earth without further harming each other or the rest of creation?


9:45 AM 10:30 AM

Community Health Evangelism (CHE) 25 years later...

Dr. Bibiana MacLeod

As Bibiana settles into the next stage of her ministry life with her family, she looks back and reflects on the changes that Community Health Evangelism (CHE) has brought to the lives of their friends and co-workers in Haiti. Bibiana will take us for a virtual visit to the communities of Mombin Crochu and Bois de Laurence, enter the home of Aniesse in Lagwamit, hear their stories and see with our own eyes what worked, what did not, and what needs to be improved, adapted or left behind in community development from the bottom up.


11:00 AM 11:45 AM

The Role of Green Manure/Cover Crops in Smallholder Agriculture

Roland Bunch

Roland will present on how GM/CCs offer a long-term fertility and resiliance that smallholder farmers can afford.


12:30 PM 1:30 PM

Lunch

A light lunch is included in your conference registration and is served at the ECHO Global Farm.


1:45 PM 2:45 PM

Afternoon Workshops I

Gain hands-on experience, meet the speakers, and participate in unique workshops at the ECHO Global Farm.

3:15 PM 4:15 PM

Afternoon Workshops II

Gain hands-on experience, meet the speakers, and participate in unique workshops at the ECHO Global Farm.


5:00 PM 7:00 PM

Dinner

Dinner options are available within a short walking distance of the hotel. Dinner is on your own, and we encourage you to use the time to network with your fellow delegates.


7:00 PM 8:00 PM

Evening Breakout Sessions I

Learn about your fellow delegates and their projects around the world. Opportunities exist for delegates to host presentations and networking events.


8:10 PM 8:40 PM

Evening Breakout Sessions II

Learn about your fellow delegates and their projects around the world. Opportunities exist for delegates to host presentations and networking events.

7:00 AM 8:00 AM

Breakfast

Breakfast at the hotel is complementary for hotel guests.


9:00 AM 9:45 AM

Breadfruit products: untapped commercial potential

Mary McLaughlin

Fresh breadfruit is delicious but the real commercial potential lies with post-harvest products. In this session the array of retail breadfruit products being produced for local and export markets will be discussed.


9:45 AM 10:30 AM

Scaling horticulture technologies for small-scale farmers – From production to postharvest

Erin McGuire

The Horticulture Innovation Lab has worked to scale appropriate across the globe for over a decade. Fruits and vegetables, while producing healthy products and sound investments, can have unique challenges. This talk showcases technologies to mitigate these challenges, while drawing upon the lessons learned and obstacles overcome in the pathway to scale. Featuring: Nethouse for pest management, Drying bead, Zero Energy Cooling Chamber, Solar Dryer, and DryCard.


11:00 AM 11:45 AM

Creating Appropriate Technologies for People in Developing Countries

Dr. Greg Bixler

This talk will cover the DO appropriate technology design process as well as lessons learned and best practices. Included are aspects of the entrepreneurial mindset, human-centered design, as well as political, cultural, and economic factors that greatly affect the ability of a solution to reach scale.


12:30 PM 1:30 PM

Lunch

A light lunch is included in your conference registration and is served at the ECHO Global Farm.


1:45 PM 3:15 PM

Appropriate Technology Fair

Interact with organizations and tools that will impact your agricultural and community development work through the use of appropriate technologies.

3:45 PM 4:15 PM

Afternoon Workshops

Gain hands-on experience, meet the speakers, and participate in unique workshops at the ECHO Global Farm.


5:00 PM 7:00 PM

Dinner

Dinner options are available within a short waking distance of the hotel. Dinner is on your own, and we encourage you to use the time to network with your fellow delegates.


7:00 PM 8:00 PM

Evening Breakout Sessions I

Learn about your fellow delegates and their projects around the world. Opportunities exist for delegates to host presentations and networking events.


8:10 PM 8:40 PM

Evening Breakout Sessions II

Learn about your fellow delegates and their projects around the world. Opportunities exist for delegates to host presentations and networking events.

7:00 AM 8:00 AM

Breakfast

Breakfast at the hotel is complementary for hotel guests.


8:45 AM 9:30 AM

Peanuts and aflatoxin: The potential and challenges for the world’s most widely grown legume

Jamie Rhoads

Practical information regarding controling aflatoxin in peanuts and increasing productivity of this crop.


9:30 AM 10:15 AM

Unleashing the value of neglected and underutilized crop diversity: Linking climate adaptation, nutrition, markets and agrobiodiversity value chains for smallholders in Guatemala

Nadezda Amaya

Using findings from a Rapid Market Appraisal, Nadezda will present her experience on a project that sought to connect Neglected and Underutilized Species to Guatemalan markets.


10:30 AM 11:15 AM

Growing Families that Flourish in God’s Kingdom

Debbie Dortzbach

As couples work to enrich their relationship as God designed, the entire family will flourish. This session will describe the opportunity churches and communities have to strengthen couple relationships within families, promote a sustainable earth, and help families promote family nutrition and economic growth.


12:30 PM 1:30 PM

Lunch

A light lunch is included in your conference registration and is served at the ECHO Global Farm.


1:45 PM 2:45 PM

Afternoon Workshops I

Gain hands-on experience, meet the speakers, and participate in unique workshops at the ECHO Global Farm.

3:15 PM 4:15 PM

Afternoon Workshops II

Gain hands-on experience, meet the speakers, and participate in unique workshops at the ECHO Global Farm.


6:30 PM

Conference Banquet

The banquet will conclude the 26th annual ECHO® International Agriculture Conference. (Included in your conference registration.)


7:00 AM 7:45 AM

Late Registration

Last minute registration is open for delegates who have not registered prior to Friday's workshop.


7:45 AM

Post Conference Departure

Transportation is offered for those who are registered for post-conference workshops.

* Please do not be late, we will not be able to return to the hotel if you miss the departure.


8:30 PM 12:00 PM

Morning Session

These all-day courses provide in-depth and hands-on training. This year we have two options.

12:00 PM 1:30 PM

Lunch

Lunch is provided at the farm.


1:30 PM 3:30 PM

Afternoon Session

A continuation of the post conference workshops.


4:30 PM

Departure For Hotel

ECHO transportation will return delegates to the conference hotel where they can take the hotel transport to the airport or make other travel arrangements.


Join the Event

Opportunities are available for the full conference, student and spouse rates, one-day passes, post-conference workshops, and exhibitor displays.

One-Day Pass

$ 130

Lodging not included.

Attend Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday

  • Morning Plenary Sessions Yes
  • Lunch Yes
  • Afternoon Workshops Yes
  • Evening Sessions or Thursday Banquet Yes
Email for more information

Full Event

$ 345

Lodging not included.

Get the full benefit of our three day conference!

  • All Sessions & Workshops Yes
  • Lunches Yes
  • Digital Resources Yes
  • Banquet Yes
  • Certificate Yes

Spouse Registration

$ 150

Lodging not included.

Join your spouse for the full conference experience!

  • All Sessions & Workshops Yes
  • Lunches Yes
  • Digital Resources Yes
  • Banquet Yes
  • Certificate Yes
+ Post Conference Workshop
$ 50

Restoring the Soil: How to Use Green Manure/Cover Crops

All day Friday. Add a day of intensive interactive learning on ECHO's farm. Only one post conference workshop can be selected.

Lead by: Roland Bunch

  • All Day Training Yes
  • Your Choice of Topics Yes
  • Lunch Yes
  • Transportation Yes
More Details
+ Post Conference Workshop
$ 50

Field Training in Community Health Evangelism (CHE): How to Initiate the Process

All day Friday. Add a day of intensive interactive learning, on ECHO's farm. Only one post conference workshop can be selected.

Lead by: Bibiana & Alexander Macleod

  • All Day Training Yes
  • Your Choice of Topics Yes
  • Lunch Yes
  • Transportation Yes
More Details
+ Exhibitor Table
$ 100

Add a display area to highlight your organization or project.

  • Reserve a 6' Display Table Yes
  • Located at the Crowne Plaza Yes
  • Set up Monday night Yes
More Details

Early bird pricing is still in effect! Register now to secure the early bird rate of $345.
Vermicomposters aren't the only ones who get the worm!

Transportation & Lodging

Conveniently located near the ECHO Global Farm, the Crowne Plaza Hotel hosts morning plenary sessions and evening breakout sessions. Lunch and afternoon workshops take place at the ECHO Global Farm. Transportation between the hotel and the farm are provided by ECHO.

Please note that lodging is not included in conference registration fee, you will need to book your room directly through the hotel. Use group code "ECH" to receive the discounted conference rate by October 14th, 2019.

Crowne Plaza Hotel - Fort Myers at Bell Tower Shops

13051 Bell Tower Dr, Fort Myers, FL 33907 USA

Transportation is provided from the Crowne Plaza Hotel to and from ECHO's Global Farm each day. If you have your own vehicle, you are welcome to drive yourself.

Arrival By Car

The conference hotel is located approximately 5 miles west of Interstate 75 on Daniels Parkway.

Directions To The Hotel

Arrival by Plane

The hotel offers complimentary transportation to and from the Fort Myers airport. We highly recommend that you book all travel to Southwest Florida International Airport (RSW).

There are several large international airports within 2-4 hours drive from the conference including Fort Lauderdale(FLL), Miami (MIA), Tampa(TPA), and Orlando(MCO). These are not recommended as we do not provide transportation to and from these airports. However, if necessary you may be able to share a ride with another delegate. Click the links above to go to each airport's ride-sharing page.

Important Information for International Travelers
Conference Resources

What does an ECHO International Agriculture Conference look like?
Check out these videos from previous year's morning plenary speakers:

November 14, 2018

15 underutilized crops for improving the lives of smallholder farm families - Josh Jamison

Despite the incredible diversity of useful plants that exist, a small handful of crops feed the majority of the world...

November 13, 2018

The Answer Is In The Room - Dr. Karen Stoufer

One of our most important roles as we work in rural communities is to train others so that knowledge and skills can be effectively passed on and learning continue...

November 15, 2018

Comments From 2018 Delegates

If you're wondering what you might get out of an ECHO Conference, listen to what previous attendees have to say about the experience. This video is a compilation of short remarks taken during the course of the 2018 conference.

Food & Drink

Breakfast

If you are a paying guest at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, breakfast is included in your lodging costs. Breakfast usually consists of pastries, boiled eggs, cereal, fruit, milk, coffee, and juice.

Lunch

Lunch is provided each day at the ECHO® Global Farm.

Dinner

Thursday's banquet dinner is included in your conference registration, dinner on all other nights is on your own.

There are many restaurants in walking distance of the conference hotel. Below we have provided some resources if you are looking for a place to eat:

The resources and networking opportunities that make the ECHO International Agriculture Conference unique are available year-round through ECHOcommunity.org

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