Agriculture is the backbone of Kenya’s economy and the largest source of income for both poor and non-poor households however, it is faced with a myriad of challenges some of which are more specific to the youth and this influences their decision on whether to engage in the sector.
The sector presents a unique opportunity for youth to create decent work for themselves and for others; with the current impacts of climate change and global warming sustainable agriculture is a solution to find a good balance between the need for food production and the preservation of the ecological system within the environment. Agroecology is a promising way to support a transition towards more sustainable food systems from farm to table with the goal of achieving ecological, economic, and social sustainability. Some of the threats to agroecological practice and food systems include: poor accessibility of land; lack of awareness & interest about agroecology; perceived lack of profitability and over reliance of rainfall. These threats also present opportunities for increasing practice of agroecology i.e there is growing consumer demand for healthy diet and an increase in scientific knowledge of agroecology.
AgriProFocus with support from IKEA Foundation is currently implementing the Youth in Agroecology and Business Learning Track in Africa (YALTA) program which aims to improve business opportunities for youth in agroecology; improve capacity of youth to apply agroecological principles; youth feel more involved in initiatives on agroecology; increase effectiveness and efficiency of initiatives on youth and agroecology; and lastly to increase attention for youth and agroecology in research, policy agenda and educational curricula.
The three year program is currently underway in Kenya, Rwanda, Ethiopia and Uganda. In March a mapping study report was released on the constraints and opportunities of Youth in Agroecology. The report is available here.
AgriProFocus with its consortium of partners Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), Africa Agribusiness Academy (AAA), East Africa Farmers Federation (EAFF), Practical Action (PA), Netherlands Development Organisation (SNV), Participatory Ecological Land Use Management Association (PELUM) and Swedish International Agriculture Network Initiative (SIANI) will host the National Youth in Agroecology Summit which will take place from 12th-16 October. There will be four regional agroecology forums with the activities culminating into a national summit which will be held during the World Food Celebrations on 16th October 2020.
The four Regional Youth and Agroecology summits will take place in:
- North and South Rift Region – Nakuru, Nyandarua,Uasin Gishu, Kericho,Nandi, Baringo, Elgeyo Marakwet and Narok with the summit being held in Nakuru on 12th October 2020.
- Upper Eastern Region – Tharaka Nithi, Meru, Isiolo, Laikipia, Kirinyaga, Embu, Muranga. The Agroecology Forum will be held in Embu on 12th October 2020
- Nyanza and Western Region– Migori ,Kisii, Homabay,Siaya,Kisumu,Kakamega, Bungoma, Vihiga and TransNzoia. The Agroecology Forum will be held in Kisumu on 14th October 2020.
- Lower Eastern/Coast Region– Makueni, Kitui,Machakos, Garissa and coast counties. The Agroecology Forum will be held in Makueni on 14th October 2020
The Regional Youth and Agroecology regional forums will bring together all stakeholders to deliberate how to create decent works for the youth and to rally the county governments and partners to support rural youth. Youths and stakeholders working with the youth are highly encouraged to register.
In the coming weeks to the summit, you will be kept posted on the venue of the regional youth and agroecology summits and the National Summit as well as a list of speakers and businesses that will be highlighted during the summit.
To register please click HERE
For enquiries please email email@example.com or call +254 735 145 307