Give careful thought to how much time to allocate for the training course. The appropriate length of time will depend upon several factors:
• any official policies or regulations that specify length of time for training;
• number of hours required to teach the desired knowledge and skills in the curriculum;
• availability of the trainees to attend the number and length of sessions; resources of the agency doing the training, i.e., budget, staff time, etc.
The experiences of three projects1 that have already trained THPs may provide helpful guidelines to determine the duration of official training for THP curricula.
Duration of official training time for TBAs:
• One project conducted the training for 15 days in two stages (10 + 5), at a training centre, for a total of approximately 90 hours.
• One project conducted the training for 19 days in three stages (11 + 4 + 4), at a training centre, for a total of approximately 114 hours.
Duration of official training time for herbalists and other healers:
• One project conducted the training in two 1/2 day sessions per week for 5 months, in the community, for a total of approximately 120 hours.
It should be emphasized that in all the above 3 cases additional time was given for follow up and problem solving sessions in the field after and between the official "classroom" training.