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Financing Youth in Agriculture

YPARD Kenya and African Youth Initiative on Climate Change (AYICC) partnered to convene a session in ACCRA Ghana during this year's CAADP Partners Platform on the 12th of April 2016. This was the only youth session for the entire 3 days of CAADP PP under the sponsorship of the Africa Union (AU).

The side event theme Financing Youth in Agriculture aimed at spear-heading new innovations and best practices to integrate African youth into Sustainable Agriculture through the CAADP Framework. The event was attended by various stakeholders involved in Agricultural development in Africa including government officials and representatives of various youth led institutions. The Youth In Agribusiness Initiative (YIA) and the CAADP Youth Engagement Toolkit was launched during the meeting. We thank the African Union Commission and the NEPAD Agency for creating the space for meaningful youth participation in this meeting.

It is after this forum that CAADP Non-State Actors (CNC) Youth Network was formed following a recommendation on the youth outcome document. As the YPARD Kenya representative and co-convener of this session, and also as a CNC Committee member, I was asked to join this CNC Youth network through which I will champion YPARD Africa's youth in agriculture needs to the CNC and AU. This working group is already in motion with sufficient backing from CNC and AU at large. This further puts YPARD Africa at another level in Africa which is pretty exciting to me.

Meeting Outcomes and Key Recommendations

  1. From the youth side event and the meeting in general, here are some of the key recomendations;
  2. Government and development partners should facilitate access to land, training and new technologies for young people to venture into the agricultural sector to reduce the youth employment titanic.
  3. Promote and re-brand agriculture and its value chain through various youth platforms and meetings including the media to entice young people to embark on agribusiness.
  4. Private sector should facilitate access to inclusive and flexible credit facilities to promote youth participation in agricultural and sustainable livelihood projects.
  5. Governments should revisit their national education policies for “Agricultural Studies” curriculum in secondary schools to be more practical and relevant in teaching the entire Agricultural value chain.
  6. African Union Commission and NEPAD Agency should develop a CAADP Youth Engagement Strategy and pilot CAADP youth projects and innovative enterprises (with adequate material, technical and financial support and market based) for young people to engage in the different sectors of the Agriculture value chain in AU member states.
  7. African Union Commission, NEPAD Agency and CAADP Non-State Actors Coalition should support the popularization and dissemination of the youth engagement tool kit on CAADP launched during the meeting.
  8. Commitments by the African Youth Initiative on Climate Change and Partners

Additionaly, AYICC and the partners committed to;

  1. Form a CAADP Youth Working Group to support the development of a CAADP Youth Engagement Strategy to be launched during the 13th Partnership Platform Meeting in 2017.
  2. Engage and coordinate various youth structures on agricultural development in Africa to launch the CAADP Youth Network during the next partnership platform meeting in 2017.
  3. Promote funding and training opportunities for young farmers clubs and youth farms in schools and communities across Africa.
  4. Mobilize and engage AYICC 45 Country Chapters and 20 YPARD national chapters to provided informed youth voice in the implementation of country CAADP Programmes including the National Agricultural Investment Plans (NAIPs).