Empowering the Future: Youth in Building Sustainable Food Systems

In a virtual conversation spearheaded by the Kenya National Farmers’ Federation (KENAFF), the spotlight was on the pivotal role of youth in shaping sustainable food systems

A screenshot of our session

Moderated by Ms. Valary Otieno, Assistant Project Officer at KENAFF, the dialogue brought together diverse voices, including the CEO of Imfuyo, Mr. Bernard Njathi, alongside esteemed speakers like Mr. Jeremiah Rogito, a Food and Land Use specialist at AGRA, and Mr. Winstone Changulo, a young agripreneur and advocate for food and nutrition security.

The role of youth in building sustainable farming systems

The engagement, accessible via X (Twitter Spaces), provided a platform for a plethora of stakeholders, ranging from agronomists to technologists, to delve into the multifaceted dimensions of youth engagement in agriculture.

Throughout the conversation, speakers emphasized the critical role of youth in driving innovation and sustainability in agriculture. Mr. Jeremiah Rogito highlighted, “Youth bring fresh perspectives and innovative solutions to the table, making them essential drivers of change in sustainable agriculture.”

This sentiment was echoed by Mr. Winstone Changulo, who emphasized the importance of youth empowerment in building resilient food systems, stating, “Empowering young farmers is not just about securing our food supply for today but ensuring a sustainable future for generations to come.”

Addressing Challenges: From limited access to finance and land to inadequate infrastructure and market barriers, participants discussed the obstacles hindering youth participation in agriculture. 

Ms. Valary Otieno noted, “While there are challenges, there are also immense opportunities for young farmers to thrive in sustainable agriculture. It’s about equipping them with the right tools and support to overcome these obstacles and make a meaningful impact.”

Building Sustainable Food Systems: Central to the dialogue was the imperative of building sustainable food systems that prioritize environmental stewardship, social equity, and economic viability. Mr. Bernard Njathi emphasized, “Sustainable agriculture is not just about producing food; it’s about ensuring that future generations have the resources they need to thrive. Youth involvement is key to achieving this goal.”

Collaborative Action: The event emphasized the importance of collaborative action among stakeholders, including governments, civil society, private sector actors, and academia

We must work together to create an enabling environment for youth in agriculture,” urged Mr. Winstone Changulo. “By fostering partnerships and amplifying youth voices, we can co-create inclusive policies and initiatives that empower young people and drive sustainable agricultural development.”

KENAFF’s Commitment to Youth Empowerment: KENAFF, through its various initiatives, plays a crucial role in empowering youth in agriculture. From mentorship programs to capacity-building workshops, KENAFF equips young farmers “youths” with the skills and resources needed to thrive in sustainable agriculture. Their efforts are instrumental in nurturing the next generation of agricultural leaders and innovators.

Imfuyo’s Vision: Imfuyo, as a leading advocate for sustainable agriculture, is committed to empowering youth in agriculture. By providing tailored training programs, access to finance, and mentorship opportunities, 

Imfuyo aims to cultivate a new generation of agripreneurs who are equipped to address food security challenges while promoting environmental stewardship and economic resilience. 

Additionally, Imfuyo is actively seeking strategic project partners to drive youth participation in agriculture. Through collaborative efforts, Imfuyo aims to drive food production, reduce poverty, and unlock better incomes and livelihoods, thereby empowering the economy for a better tomorrow.

As the discourse concluded, it became evident that the journey towards sustainable food systems hinges on empowering and mobilizing the next generation of agricultural leaders. By harnessing their energy, creativity, and expertise, we can cultivate a future where agriculture serves as a cornerstone of prosperity, nourishment, and environmental stewardship.

To revisit the insightful conversation and glean further insights, the recording of the X (Twitter Space) can be accessed here

Join us in championing youth empowerment and sustainable agriculture as we pave the way towards a brighter, more resilient future for all.

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