Tag Archive: ICTs

Most African government are grappling with the problem of youth unemployment and it is a major problem. This is exacerbated by the fact that the youth now make up the largest share of the population in most African countries. A report by the World Bank, Youth Employment in Sub-Saharan Africa that was published in Washington, January 27, 2014 says that raising earning potential among Africa’s growing youth population is a major priority for the region.

The report notes that it is more urgent than ever to pave the way for more productive job opportunities regardless of the type of work that young people will do—in the fast-growing modern wage sector, in household enterprises, or on millions of small family-run farms. It also notes that with the right combination of policies in place, Africa’s position as the “youngest” region in the world—in contrast to most other regions where populations are rapidly aging—could lead to greater prosperity at the household level, and major economic gains for African countries.

The 283 document goes a head to outline more priorities areas to address Africa’s youth employment challenge and I wish someone was reading. The report can be accessed here:Youth employment in Sub-Saharan Africa


With a greater focus to value chains in the recent years, there are now far more opportunities for young people to engage in Agriculture and find rewarding careers. For this reason, there is need for governments to formulate policies that will enable agricultural development and transformation to focus on the entire food and agriculture system rather than narrowing it to farming. While doing this, the governments should put in place measures that will successfully attract the youth into agriculture. Measures that will make it sexy enough to attract the youth.

In Kenya, the government seems to understand this need too well and it has undertaken several measures to promote agriculture in the country. First, the government has launched a project called e-Agriculture. This project is aimed at using ICT tools to ensure that farmers have access to all the necessary information through these tools. The government has therefore provided laptops and smart phones to the government extension workers and then trained them on how to access information for training farmers. This is aimed at attracting the youth into the sector as well as making it profitable.

With the ongoing devolution process in the country, county governments are working hard to ensure food security for their people. Counties are making huge financial allocations for agricultural developments. This money is being used in promoting initiatives aimed at increasing farm productivity and addressing challenges facing the Kenyan farmers. The current challenge being addressed at this level is the foot-and-mouth disease that is rampaging through the countries. Another project is a Sh22milion deal that was signed to boost fish breeding to supply up to 750,000 fingerlings and plans are underway to establish more than 750 ponds to increase fish production.

With the Kenya’s 47 counties all promoting agriculture, the sector is posed for a brighter future. Farming in Kenya is slowly gaining momentum with the hopes of alleviating hunger in the counties.

Photo contest on Family farming


What a way of promoting farming!! Organizing competitions serves well in promoting a course on which they are organized – in this context, agriculture. The International Year of Family Farming (IYFF) highlights the decisive role of family farming in the sustainable production of 80% of the world’s food and in the conservation of ecosystems and biodiversity. The IYFF-2014 photo competition collects visual expressions to build stronger recognition and support for family farming, and encourage broad participation in the IYFF.


  • The deadline for entries is 1 May 2014
  • The winning photos will be announced in October 2014

For more information on the contest visit the organizers’ site here

Is nature to blame or ourselves?

Men cut down a tree for timber

“……….. if we destroy the environment through destroying indigenous forests, nature is very unforgiving; it will fight back with catastrophic consequences” – once said Kenya’s Wangari Maathai. and now we blame almost everything on the nature. We say climate change is to blame for the low yields on our farms, it is because of it that we have prolonged droughts and devastating floods and some people go to the extend of blaming God. But where exactly did things start going bad? It all started when human kind became greedy and started getting from nature more than he needs and more than nature it can replenish itself. In all these, nature is only hitting back at us after what we’ve done to it. We the people are to blame for all these disasters we are experiencing. We have forgotten that the society has a role to play. It is very true that human forces are the ones making people increasingly vulnerable to nature’s vagaries. The society (mostly human institutions and policies) select who to get the basic resources,that is,only those who can afford it have the advantage while the hard times only hit the poorest. A majority of persons live on the brink of disaster as a result of being deprived off natural resources upon which they depend by the powerful few.

We should stop blaming nature because you and I have the sole responsibility of ensuring that we take measures to mitigate against these calamities. The solution to these calamities lies in sustainable lifestyles –that is, transforming our preferences and efficiently use the available resources without over-exploiting the planet. At the same time sustainable lifestyles should not compromise the standard of living but, instead, allow everybody on the planet to live comfortably. We can make things work for ourselves without blaming nature.

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