To expand its support for young agricultural entrepreneurs, or “agripreneurs,” and to help cultivate the next crop of farmers in Africa, the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) signed a hosting and collaboration agreement with the Climate Smart Agriculture Youth Network (CSAYN) in Kenya. The agreement will have the network’s Kenya chapter hosted at CIAT Africa’s regional office in Nairobi and outlines collaborations.
CSAYN Kenya and CIAT Africa agreed to jointly design and implement initiatives to train and build capacity for youth agribusinesses to help them become profitable and sustainable enterprises. The cooperation will aim to scale up the use of digital tools in agriculture and strengthen the uptake of innovations that can turn agriculture into a viable livelihood option for African youth, who often see agriculture as an occupation of last resort. CIAT and CSAYN Kenya will help youth acquire improved market access, provide mentorship and professional advice from scientists and improve access to financial resources.
“I believe that it is the young trees that hold the future of the forest and this is not any different for the agricultural sector,” said Debisi Araba, CIAT’s Regional Director in Africa. “With the right support, the youth can use their ingenuity, innovation and energy to becoming the driving force, a catalyst towards agricultural transformation. This is the kind of support we hope to provide.”
Victor Mugo, the Kenyan Country Coordinator for CSAYN expressed his excitement at the prospects the partnership offers. He said that in working with CIAT, the network would be able to grow in its pursuit of providing a comprehensive support system to the youth in their journey to agripreneurship.
The Climate Smart Agriculture Youth Network (CSAYN) was formed in 2014 to actively engage youth across Africa and the globe in seeking a better and more sustained world by implementing climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices led by the youth. CSAYN creates awareness and builds the productive capacity of young people in CSA concepts for adaptation, reducing emissions, and increasing food productivity in a sustainable manner. CSAYN is currently constituted in 37 countries in Africa, Asia, USA and Europe.