The country faces food scarcity because a majority of farmers are “old and dying” while the youth are not taking up farming, the government warned on Monday.
Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Willy Bett said a survey of farmers in the country has shown that most are between 60 and 62 years old, which is a major concern since the country’s life expectancy is at 63.
The government, he said, had set aside Sh20 billion to support and rally youth into agriculture for the next five years to avert a crisis.
The government targets people in their 40s but youths will also be recruited, he said.
GRAPPLING WITH CHALLENGES
Mr Bett also noted that low levels of farm mechanisation had made agriculture labour-intensive and less attractive to youths.
He added that the sector was also grappling with challenges of high cost of production owing to costly inputs and low yields, limited access to affordable credit by farmers and land fragmentatio
I originally trained as an engineer, and at the core of everything we learnt was design thinking and problem solving. We were taught how to use our expertise to pull things apart, find problem’s, analyse options and provide solutions. And for most of my career as a sustainability consultant, I have unquestionably applied this thinking to almost everything I did.
But recently — I have been starting to seriously question the whole problem solving thing.
Why? After completing a Masters in Psychology, and studying Regenerative Development with Regenesis and CLEAR — I have become increasingly aware of its limitations. Don’t get me wrong, problem solving has a useful role in the right context, e.g. if
In order to
face the food security and nutrition challenges of the future there is a need
to develop the capacities of the next generation of agricultural producers, by
identifying ways to engage and empower youth – both women and men.
Approximately 90 percent of young people between the ages of 15 and 24 live in
developing countries, where agriculture employs as much as 60 percent of the labor force, and yet the majority of youth do not currently see agriculture as
a viable career path given the low productivity rates and the difficulties they
know to have been faced by previous generations. Farming has always been associated with poverty and punishment from our parents and grandparents.I remember when i was growing up anytime i failed my exams my parents told me they would take me to my rural home to dig.Anytime i failed in school my parents would threaten me that i would end up in the farm where people with no education goes to.
Cognizant of all... Read more
There is a big sustainability gap in African farming. This is because, while a very high percentage of African farmers are old and aging (mainly above 60), the youth still have a tendency to shy away from farming and agriculture – at least not if they have other alternatives. More and more young people – especially the rural youth – focus on moving out from farming and rural communities to find “good jobs” in urban centres.
Arising from this trend is a question which many development organisations working in Africa and African governments are trying to understand how, or mobilizing resources, to tackle. That question is: who will feed the Africans of the future? During his keynote speech, at the 7th Africa Agriculture Science Week, Akinwumi Adesina, President of African Development Bank (AfDB) acknowledged that “young Africans are needed in agriculture to raise profitability (and innovations) in the sector.
That means, in addition to... Read more
The Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) is a Network of 55 Universities in 22 African countries. RUFORUM was formed by African Vice Chancellors with the vision for a vibrant agricultural sector linked to African universities that can produce high-performing graduates and high-quality research, responsive to the demands of Africa’s farmers for innovations, and able to generate sustainable livelihoods and national economic development. RUFORUM recognizes the need for greater youth participation in enterprise development and business incubation and through its member universities and partners has supported training and skills development. It has also supported start-ups through innovative financing mechanism of the re
Find below the call for applications.
Youth and young people are becoming a hot topic among development donors and actors. But who exactly do these "labels" apply to, and are they too broad for effective policies? Or do they create too narrow a focus which is blind to larger structural issues?
Varyingly, "youth" are being identified as "at risk” – of unemployment, of marginalisation or abuses – or “as risk”, where they may engage in undesirable activities from crime to terrorism, armed violence or migration. However, there are also many calls to understand youth “as opportunity” (PDF), particularly in the context of Africa’s “youth bulge” and its promise of a vast demographic dividend.
A recent visit to the Dutch Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) and some great discussions with research colleagues there, brought some clarity into the interlinked promises and problems arising from development actors’ burgeoning interest in youth and work.
Since its inception, YPARD has grown rapidly, demonstrating the need and value that young professionals see in a youth focused network.
This is moreso reflected in the recently released YPARD 2015 annual report which takes into account all the activities YPARD community has been involved in for the last one year.Among these notable activities include;
In the last one year, YPARD national representatives have made waves in their countries, mobilizing youth in agriculture, focusing action on specific issues and making their voices heard. As of the report publication, YPARD membership spread across the globe has 11, 621 registered members from 187 countries. But not all young people are online a situation that YPARD Sri Lanka representative has taken note of. She brings the offline youths printed copies of the YPARD newsletter while in Armenia the message is spre... Read more