The Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN) with support from the MasterCard Foundation convened a policy training session on the 27th of November 2017 for youth working in Climate Smart Agriculture on the sidelines of the 4th Global Science Conference on CSA on the 28th-30th November 2017 in Johannesburg, South Africa hosted by the NEPAD Agency. The training workshop was designed to pilot test a guide that FANRPAN is developing on how youth can engage in agricultural policy development.
The workshop was attended by thirteen young agriculture and development professionals from FANRPAN member countries namely Kenya, Malawi, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Youth employment has become an important policy priority in most countries and there is great interest to identify sources of productive employment and effective strategies to promote job creation and economic growth in Africa. The transformation of agriculture in Africa holds tremendous promise for catalyzing growth and creating employment opportunities for the world’s largest youth population. The next generation of farmers, researchers, scientists and extension workers are best placed to positively contribute to policy development as this has been a stubborn problem impeding agricultural transformation. Unless agriculture policies support young agripreneurs ongoing initiatives will not be taken to scale and impact will be limited.
FANRPAN believes that these challenges can only be addressed if those most affected by the problems are equipped with solutions. Addressing policy challenges helps create a conducive environment and currently very few youths understand how policies are made and how they can engage and use their own experiences to craft evidence based policies. In FANRPAN’s experience, over the last six years of working on youth related policy issues, the most frequently asked question by policy implementers, is "who makes policies and where do we go if we are not happy with existing policies?". The 4th Global Science Conference on Climate-Smart Agriculture presented an excellent opportunity for FANRPAN to pilot the policy guide.
The GSC-CSA takes forward the initiative on research and science started in October 2010 with the aim to bring science to bear on practical advances in scaling up climate smart agriculture. It follows three scientific conferences that have been held so far (University of Wageningen in 2011; University of California, Davis in 2013 and in Montpellier in 2015). For more Information on the 4th Global Science Conference on Climate-Smart Agriculture: http://www.nepad.org/content/4th-global-science-conference-climate-smart... (link is external) For more Information on FANRPAN Youth Policies follow us on twitter: @FANRPAN #Fanrpan_youth