According to the United Nations website, the theme of International Youth Day 2019, “Transforming education”, highlights efforts to make education more relevant, equitable and inclusive for all youth, including efforts by youth themselves. Rooted in Goal 4 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – to “ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all” – International Youth Day 2019 will examine how Governments, young people and youth-led and youth-focused organizations, as well as other stakeholders, are transforming education and how these efforts are contributing to the achievement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
2030 is in 11 years…ELEVEN YEARS EVERYONE!!! There is such responsibility on this generation to learn as much and get involved. Enough of waiting for some savior in a bid to escape responsibilities. Actually, there are a lot of youths in Africa who are doing absolutely great and using their platforms, voices and resources to educate and advocate for quality education, learning opportunities for all.
Such is An NGO called the “Green Girls Project” that has been organizing training workshops all over Cameroon since October 2016 to teach teenage girls how to make bio-gas, a renewable energy created by using biodigesters to ferment organic material. The goal is to teach these girls new skills and develop equality between men and women.
The “Green Girls Project” NGO was created in August 2016 by Monique Ntumngia, a 26-year-old Cameroonian lawyer, with support from the African Women’s Entrepreneurship Program, a programme run through the State Department of the United States that helps African women develop their own projects. The NGO won a $100000 cash price from the Visa Everywhere Initiative in June 2019 and she is the first African woman to win this.
Agropreneur Nigeria is also one of the Companies educating people about the endless possibilities in Agriculture via their blog, and other platforms such as Twitter and Instagram.”In a country like Nigeria, it is no news that there is a aging population of farmers, we also have insufficient interest in the agricultural sector by the younger generation due to a number of reasons includes but not limited to:
- a wrong perspective of agriculture especially production(farming) that is seen as not profitable, for the uneducated and labor intensive.
- young people are not equipped to take advantage of the opportunities in the value chain such as processing, regional markets and value-addition
- Constrained access to land and finance
- lack of knowledge both technical & business
- lack of access to information that can guide them to success.
At AgropreneurNg, the goal is to tackle a number of the above challenges by focusing on three key areas known in short as “CAgB”. CAgB is an abbreviation for Communication, Agvocacy and Building Capacity. They recently organized a Masterclass in Collaboration with Farm Republic where the Prominent Youths in Agriculture trained young Agro-Enthusiasts on Investing in Agriculture and Value addition. This is one of other trainings they do.
We also have the Amazing Tomisin Adefare (@Tomisin948 on Twitter)in Nigeria. She is the Founder of Agroprovider also known as TopakAgrohub a platform with the mission to To create and nurture multi-stakeholder innovation platforms for efficient extension service delivery in different areas of agriculture. She currently runs a training platform for teaching the younger generation about Agriculture by running gardening projects with schools in Osun state, Nigeria where she is based. In her own words according to her tweet on the 4th of August 2019, “I believe taking #agric gospel to Pry and secondary level will as well help to alleviate hunger and achieve food security. This is why @AgroProvider is educating teenagers on the basics of growing food and as well spark awareness on ending childhood hunger. #Schoolgardenproject”
In Kenya, There is @Maxwel_Kiptanui also known as Mr. Horticulture. He is a Horticulture expert, Ambassador for youths in Horticulture, advocate of Technology driven farming ° Farmer and a trainer. HE Uses his platforms to preach the gospel of Agriculture and he is always ready to dispense knowledge and train others.
In his words, “My great desire is to help farmers change their mindset on Agriculture” and “Our vision is to develop a model farm and to help farmers see the benefit of diversification and also the importance of doing”. He is renown especially on twitter as an Agricultural Advocate who believes that Agribusiness still holds the potential to turn around the economy of our continent, We are siting on rich soil, evenly spread rainfall, good temperatures and cheap Labour, this is Gold!! African countries should look around on the kind of resources we have
In other African countries such as Zambia, the story of Youths taking the initiative is the same. There is an Initiative that contains thousands of youth in Zambia called: Young Emerging farmers initiative YEFI which is led by a team of ten led by Stanley C. Mutale who is the Director Projects Coordinator. He is a Zambian based Entreprenurer, farmer, promoter of Agribusiness. This initiative comprises of some youths who decided to take the future of their country into their own hands instead of waiting for a saviour.
The Initiative was Conceptualized by three youths from Lusaka Zambia at the University of Zambia in 2014. These are; Matthew Ntabo, Stanley C. Mutale and Richard Kachungu. This was aimed at contributing to National Development through job creation among the youths via agribusiness. The Initiative was created to change the Mindset of youths towards agriculture.Instead of lamenting about the issues, these young folks came together to form YEFI. This is one of the largest Agro-Initiatives in the Continent .
Although we have celebrated International Youth Day, we’ll still salute the courage of men and ladies who dedicate their time, resources and energy to training others, feeding the nations and especially ensuring that the next generation learns about all that Agriculture has to offer individuals, Nations and the world at large.
We salute those who trained, mentored/ mentor, Inspire the ones currently blazing paths in Agricultural space in Africa and we encourage those still trying to make up their minds to do that as soon as possible.
You are the Heroes of the International Youth Day.