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Erick Nunda, YPARD DRC being awarded for his community solution ideas at the Africa Agriscience Agribuisness Week (AASW)


In pursuit of sustainable development while combating the global climate crisis, knowledge exchange and robust networks are indispensable strategies to link impactful projects with climate finance. Too often, local projects are under funded, and limited by the financial means to scale. 

Young Professionals for Agricultural Development (YPARD) Community Solutions Projects are evidence of projects ripe for scaling with quality finance. This is where partnerships such as the FAST Initiative can significantly move the needle. Our Country Chapters actively engage with local communities, collaborating on projects tackling specific challenges within food systems. Working in concert with diverse stakeholders, young professionals provide access to knowledge and facilitate capacity building on a range of sustainable food systems practices. Through these collaborative efforts, YPARD aims to empower communities, fostering resilience and promoting the adoption of climate change mitigation, adaptation and socially responsible approaches to agriculture and food production.

Below are a few examples of YPARD Community Solutions Projects.

 

YPARD Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) Community Solutions Project

Tilapia Fish Production in a Floating Cage

Agriculture in Africa has the potential to significantly improve livelihoods and boost the economy, particularly through job creation for the continent's young population. Despite this potential, there is currently a low level of youth involvement in agriculture, as many are yet to recognize the profitable opportunities it offers for sustainable livelihoods. The Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) conducted a workshop focusing on strengthening youth initiatives for technology deployment in agri-entrepreneurship. 

YPARD DRC capitalized on the Fish Value Chain Opportunity, which was an outcome of FARA’s Agri-youth engagement workshop, and initiated fish production in ponds in the Walungu territory. The Eastern and Southeastern parts of the DRC are strategic regions for fish farming, presenting new opportunities for adopting technologies in intensive fish farming. The International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) aims to improve Tilapia fish production in Lake Kivu through the Tilapia Cage Pilot Project (PPTC-SK), promoting access to fingerlings, locally produced fish feeds, and enhancing the value chain. YPARD DRC is actively involved in the PPTC-SK project, which seeks to harness the entrepreneurial spirit of young people and reduce food imports by making fish products accessible in Bukavu and across the D.R. Congo.
Learn more about this project here



YPARD Eswatini Community Solution Project

Rural Grown Farms

Established in 2017 by YPARD Eswatini, Rural Grown Farms is a woman-led agribusiness enterprise focused on enhancing the livelihoods of communities in Eswatini and the region. In collaboration with the Department of Agriculture, Research Services, and in partnership with experienced youth out-growers and ESUS Farm, the project aims to digitize youth farmers through a dedicated portal. Actively engaging youth in crop cultivation for improved nutrition, the project establishes a Community Enterprise (COE) for the sale of produce. Emphasizing Climate Smart Farming with Biofortified beans, the initiative, led by YPARD Eswatini, provides entrepreneurial skills training and nutritional improvements through the manufacture and sale of bean jam. 

ESUS Farm contributes to digitalization by registering youth farmers in a portal, facilitating monitoring and market information. With a focus on women and youth, Rural Grown has already created over 15 jobs, aiming to surpass 50 opportunities in production, warehousing, packaging, and logistics. This investment not only boosts productivity and biofortified beans consumption but also addresses iron deficiency, promoting economic well-being in households. Currently operating on a hectare of land, the project plans to expand its impact further.

Learn more about this project here



YPARD Ghana Community Solution Project

Beekeeping in Agroecological Systems

To create quality jobs for women and youth, YPARD Ghana is investing in improved rural-urban links within the food system. The chapter highlights the necessity of advancing agroforestry development methodologies, especially to create rural-to-urban linkages which are culturally, socially, and environmentally appropriate. With this in mind, YPARD Ghana launched its Community Solutions Project for young beekeepers. The initiative was started in June 2023 in the Volta region of the Ho municipality with local bee species and has thus far trained 15 young entrepreneurs. This was done to support the government of Ghana's Green Agenda and to support ecotourism.

YPARD Cameroon Community Solution Projects

Seed for Agriculture

Seed for Agriculture project is a nursery which provides certified seedlings, but also training, to rural farmers for agroforestry practices. The project’s mission is to contribute to the production of quality seedlings and train young professionals in this strategic sector. The initiative was started by Bebel Nguepi, YPARD Cameroon Country Representative, four years ago. Mrs Edoa Celine, agroecologist, seed technologist, and YPARD Cameroon member is an expert trainer for the project.

Tree-planting with Children and Youth: Demonstrating the long-term effects of Green Regeneration

YPARD Cameroon’s tree planting project took place at Mfandena Public School in Yaoundé, Cameroon. The project was implemented with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies - IFRC, Young Volunteers for Environment Cameroon, Seed for Agriculture, and J2D-Afrique.

This initiative went beyond planting trees; the goal was to nurture a generation of environmental stewards. In collaboration with dedicated partners, YPARD Cameroon meticulously refined their approach, engaging in detailed planning, negotiations with schools, and mobilizing passionate volunteers. Their hands-on involvement extended from supplying seedlings and compost to actively participating in the tree-planting activity. 

Learn more about the above three projects here.




Building community projects stands as a powerful grassroots approach to instigate sustainable transformation, cultivate an array of environmentally friendly job opportunities, and fortify the resilience of communities. However, in order to amplify the impact of these initiatives and facilitate their expansion, the availability of financial support is paramount. The need for easy access to increased funding is a crucial factor in not only ensuring the viability and success of community projects but also in propelling them towards scalable models that can be replicated across diverse regions. By streamlining financial accessibility, we can unlock the full potential of community-driven endeavors, empowering them to address pressing issues, propel environmental stewardship, and bolster the economic and social fabric of communities.

 

(English version below)

10 de febrero, 2024-. La Red de Profesionales por el Desarrollo Agrícola (YPARD por sus siglas en inglés) anuncia el lanzamiento de YPARD Incuba, un proyecto enfocado en desarrollar competencias aplicadas a partir de la capacitación y el acompañamiento para el desarrollo de startups o emprendimientos agropecuarios de impacto en con enfoque agroecológico. El programa de incubación a través de su proceso de fortalecimiento para el diseño de los emprendimientos agropecuarios entregará un  capital semilla de 2,500 dólares, para la mejor propuesta además de  otros reconocimientos para los equipos con un avance destacado. 

 

Para YPARD es importante reconocer a la agroecología como un enfoque holístico que aplica en sinergia conceptos y principios ecológicos y sociales al diseño y la gestión de sistemas agrícolas y alimentarios sostenibles. Considerando el contexto de crisis climática, alimentaria y otros problemas que se van agravando, este proyecto busca ser  un espacio permanente para hacer frente a futuros y presentes   desafíos globales, enfocados en  Latinoamericana y El Caribe.

 

“Buscamos brindar herramientas a la juventud para que puedan desarrollar sus startups o emprendimientos agropecuarios con enfoque agroecológico, para que de este modo generen impacto en sus territorios mediante un trabajo coordinado entre nuestra red de la mano con aliados estratégicos. Creemos que hay mucho potencial y queremos apoyar a esas ideas ganadoras para permitirles desarrollarse y crecer junto a sus comunidades”, apunta Hazell Flores, Coordinadora del Proyecto ymiembro de la coordinación de YPARD LAC. 

 

La convocatoria estará abierta a partir del 05 de febrero de 2024 y cerrará el 15 de marzo de 2024. Los equipos seleccionados para formar parte del programa de incubación recibirán entrenamiento por parte de especialistas en agronegocios para eldesarrollo de sus ideas de negocio. Todos los participantes que concluyan satisfactoriamente el programa de capacitación completo recibirán un certificado de participación. 

Posterior a esta etapa, los equipos formarán parte de un proceso de competencia en el que presentarán sus propuestas en un Demo Day, frente a un panel internacional de expertos - seleccionados por YPARD - quienes seleccionarán a los mejores proyectos tomando en cuenta criterios de: relevancia la problemática, mérito innovador, capacidad de escalabilidad y sostenibilidad. Producto de este proceso se determinará un único equipo ganador del capital semilla. Este proyecto se logrará mediante un trabajo coordinado del equipo de YPARD LAC y la Fundación Wadhwani, con el apoyo financiero del Departamento de Estado de Estados Unidos, por medio de Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship y aliados estratégicos como la Organización de las Naciones Unidas para la Agricultura y la Alimentación (FAO), el Instituto Interamericano de Cooperación para la Agricultura (IICA) y la International Land Coalition (ILC).

 

“Es importante entender, que a través de este programa de formación, los beneficiados no son solo el equipo que reciba el capital semilla. Todos los equipos que cumplan satisfactoriamente el programa, tendrán las capacidades y habilidades suficientes para continuar con sus propuestas y aplicar a otros fondos o incubadoras” indica Juan David Caro, Asistente Técnico del Proyecto y miembro de la Coordinación de YPARD LAC.

 

Para conocer las bases del programa y más información sobre cómo aplicar, puede dar clic aquí.

 

El programa aún está abierto para recibir apoyo de más socios, en caso de existir interés en conocer de qué forma se puede hacer, por favor contactar a: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 


 

English version

 

10 February, 2024- The Network of Professionals for Agricultural Development (YPARD) announces the launch of YPARD Incuba, a project focused on developing applied competencies through training and mentoring for the development of startups or ventures, or agricultural and livestock enterprises with an agroecological approach.

The incubation program, through its strengthening process for the design of agro-ecological design of agricultural and livestock ventures will provide seed capital of US$2,500 for the best proposal, in addition to other awards for teams with outstanding progress.

For YPARD, it is important to recognize agroecology as a holistic approach that synergistically applies ecological and social concepts and principles to the design and management of sustainable agricultural and food systems.Considering the context of the climate crisis and other worsening problems, this project seeks to be a permanent space to address future and present global challenges, focused on Latin America and the Caribbean.


"We seek to provide tools to youth so that they can develop their startups or agricultural and livestock agricultural and livestock enterprises with an agroecological approach, so that in this way they can impact in their territories through coordinated work between our network and strategic allies. We believe there is a lot of potential and we want to support these winning ideas to allow them to develop and grow together with their communities", notes Hazell Flores, Project Coordinator and member of the YPARD LAC.

The call will be open from February 5, 2024 and will close on March 15, 2024. The teams selected to be part of the incubation program will receive training from agribusiness specialists for the development of their business ideas. All participants who successfully complete the entire training program will receive a certificate of participation.

After this stage, the teams will be part of a competition process in which they will present their proposals at a Demo Day in front of an international panel of experts - selected by YPARD - who will select the best projects based on the following criteria: relevance to the problem, innovative merit, scalability and sustainability. As a result of this process, a single winning team will be determined. This project will be achieved through the coordinated work of the YPARD LAC team and the Wadhwani Foundation, with financial support from the U.S. Department of State through the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship and strategic allies such as the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and the International Land Coalition (ILC).

"It is important to understand that through this training program, the beneficiaries are not only the team that receives the seed capital. All teams that successfully complete the program will have sufficient skills and abilities to continue with their proposals and apply to other funds or incubators," said Juan David Caro, Technical Assistant of the Project and member of the YPARD LAC Coordination.

To learn more about the program and more information on how to apply, click here.

The program is still open to receive support from more partners, in case there is interest in knowing how to do so, please contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

 

 

Below you will find a round-up of internships, job vacancies, and consultancy positions for the month.

 

Communications, Outreach and Engagement Team Assistant - GLF (Global Landscapes Forum)

The Communications Assistant will ensure the seamless operation of the COE unit by providing top-notch administrative support in finance, procurement, operations, and general office tasks.

Location: Nairobi, Kenya

Deadline: 6 Feb, 2024

More details here

 


 

Consultant- FARA

The Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) proposes to engage a suitable Lead Consultant with his/her team of experts (a Web & Database Expert, and a User Interface Expert) to carry out this assignment with the needed professionalism and ethics.

The primary objective of this consultancy is to improve the FARA Data and Information System (FARADataInformS), a knowledge hub that provides Science and Technology Indicators (STI) metrics at the country level. This upgrade aims to enhance functionality, usability, and effectiveness in disseminating information to stakeholders. It involves integrating databases, linking data sources, and introducing artificial intelligence features to strengthen the FARA Observatory on the Science Agenda and Africa AR4D.

Deadline: 7 Feb, 2024

More details here

 


 

The 2024 One Planet Fellowship Internship Program For Emerging European Scientists

African Women in Agricultural Research and Development (AWARD) is pleased to announce the second Call for the 2024 One Planet Fellowship Internship Program targeting young European scientists.

Offered by AWARD and Agropolis Fondation through the One Planet Fellowship initiative, the Internship Program allows young European scientists to experience the specific challenges, opportunities, and context of climate change and agricultural research in Africa. The programs will enable them to visit and conduct research in a diverse African environment and broaden their perspectives on agriculture and food systems in varying landscapes.

Deadline: 8th Feb, 2024

More details here


 

Editorial Assistant - GLF (Global Landscapes Forum)

The GLF Editorial Assistant will provide writing, editing and copy-editing support to ensure the quality and stylistic consistency of the written content across these platforms, as well as implement search engine optimization (SEO) and other marketing tactics to promote their continued growth.

The ideal candidate should be a strong writer and editor with a keen eye for detail and a passion for climate and science journalism and communications. Positive energy, time management, clear and confident communication skills, and a strong desire to write are key characteristics for this position.

Location: Remote/ Bogor, Indonesia/ Nairobi, Kenya

Deadline: 15 Feb, 2024

More details here

 


 

Knowledge and Learning Intern - GLF (Global Landscapes Forum)

The primary objective of the Knowledge and Learning Intern is to support the management of the Landscape Academy website and the Digital Campus and develop material and activities for GLF’s communication and outreach channels.

Location: Bogor, Indonesia

Deadline: 16 Feb, 2024

More details here

 


 

Agrobiodiversity Summer School 2024

Accompanied by local experts, students from all over Europe will discuss the various aspects of agrobiodiversity and resilient food systems. The starting point is concrete examples in various regions of Slovenia. The different scientific and cultural perspectives of the participants are important for examining the topic of agrobiodiversity and food systems.

The Summer School is mainly directed to students enrolled in a Master programme related to agricultural science, environment, food technologies and processing, rural development, sustainability assessment or associated topics. Bachelor students are also invited to apply, but will be given second priority. Students with limited financial resources also have the opportunity to apply for a scholarship.

Deadline: 16 Feb, 2024

More details here


 

Communications Officer- ClimEat

Clim-Eat is seeking a dedicated and skilled Communications Officer to join our team. Clim-Eat invites not only individuals with a background in communications but also consultants with expertise in strategic communication, public relations, and media engagement to apply.

Location: Netherlands

Deadline: 16 Feb, 2024

More details here

 


 

Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning Officer

Clim-Eat is seeking a Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) Officer to help advance Clim-Eat’s objectives, particularly in the context of Clim-Eat in-country activities in Eastern and Southern Africa (Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania and Zambia), where we are implementing a project called ‘Scaling catalytic solutions for climate-resilient food systems in Africa.’

Location: Netherlands

Deadline: 16 Feb, 2024

More details here

 


 

Multimedia Consultant - GLF (Global Landscapes Forum)

The Multimedia Consultant helps identifying strategic multimedia content opportunities and trends. Depending on the needs, the consultant designs inspiring and engaging multimedia content for key GLF or
CIFOR-ICRAF audiences on multiple channels and formats, such as social media and community channels, websites and presentations, events, campaigns, and multimedia news platform.

Location: Remote

Deadline: 29 Feb, 2024

More details here 

 


 

Theme Leader Sustainable Value Chains and Investments (Value Chains) - GLF (Global Landscapes Forum)

The Theme Leader will lead the development and implementation of a strategy and project portfolio that delivers impact at scale for socio-economic development based on sustainable natural resource management.

Location: Bogor, Nairobi, or another CIFOR-ICRAF Country Office by arrangement with supervisor

Deadline: 29 Feb, 2024

More details here

 


 

Internship- Agrecol- Afrique

Agrecol e.V. can arrange one internship in Senegal in 2024 and will provide support in the following areas:

  • Agrecol e.V. will cover the cost of the outward and return flights (economy class) between Europe and the host country in which the partner organisation operates.
  • At least one member of the association as well as former interns are available to prepare and answer questions before and during the overseas stay.
  • After completing the internship, an invitation will be made and the costs for travel and accommodation will be covered for an Agrecol e.V. meeting (in Germany or a neighbouring country), where the interns will present their experiences abroad.

Deadline: 29 Feb, 2024

More details here

 



 

Rising Star Agrifood Fellowships - University of Reading

The AgriFood 'Rising Star' Fellowship scheme is funded by the National Institute for Research Into Dairying (NIRD) Trust, which enables the university of Reading to invest into agriculture and food research.

The university will be looking to appoint at least two Fellows in 2023/24 with a minimum of a further two Fellowship appointments in 2024/25 and 2025/26. They are looking for individuals who can push the boundaries of their discipline, who are willing to build and lead interdisciplinary research teams, and who can demonstrate the potential to deliver ground-breaking research discoveries. The university will provide similar support packages to anyone seeking to base prestigious fellowships, such as those funded by the Royal Society, European Union or UKRI, at the University of Reading.

Each Fellow will be appointed on the Lecturer scale as a Research Intensive contract, initially for three years with the intention to extend for a further two years if probationary targets have been met. The expectation is then that the Fellow will transition to a permanent academic post in their home School.

Deadline: 18 Mar, 2024

More details here

 


 

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Below you will find a round-up of internships, job vacancies, and open calls for the month.

 

Speaking/Funding Opportunity - ECOSOC Youth Forum

The ECOSOC Youth Forum, ie the annual youth forum of the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations, is a platform that bring together young people from around the world to engage in deliberations on 2030 Agenda. The youth co-organisers of the ECOSOC Youth Forum are pleased launch form for young people to apply as speakers for the various sessions of the Forum. Funding is also available for a few young people and we are working to increase the number of available spots. Currently 5 spots are available.

Location: New York

Deadline: 25 Feb, 2024, 11am New York time

More details here 


 

Program Coordinator - YPARD (Young Professionals for Agricultural Development)

The Program Coordinator is responsible for ensuring the active engagement of YPARD members in YPARD’s educational projects, including leading the YPARD cooperation projects building capacity building and advocacy. This position reports to the YPARD Director, and works closely with the Communications and Membership Coordinator and the YPARD Africa Coordinator.

Location: Home-office, preferably Germany based

Deadline: 29 Feb, 2024

More details here 


 

Multimedia Consultant - GLF (Global Landscapes Forum)

The Multimedia Consultant helps identifying strategic multimedia content opportunities and trends. Depending on the needs, the consultant designs inspiring and engaging multimedia content for key GLF or
CIFOR-ICRAF audiences on multiple channels and formats, such as social media and community channels, websites and presentations, events, campaigns, and multimedia news platform.

Location: Remote

Deadline: 29 Feb, 2024

More details here 



Theme Leader Sustainable Value Chains and Investments (Value Chains) - GLF (Global Landscapes Forum)

The Theme Leader will lead the development and implementation of a strategy and project portfolio that delivers impact at scale for socio-economic development based on sustainable natural resource management.

Location: Bogor, Nairobi, or another CIFOR-ICRAF Country Office by arrangement with supervisor

Deadline: 29 Feb, 2024

More details here


 

Internship- Agrecol- Afrique

Agrecol e.V. can arrange one internship in Senegal in 2024 and will provide support in the following areas:

  • Agrecol e.V. will cover the cost of the outward and return flights (economy class) between Europe and the host country in which the partner organisation operates.
  • At least one member of the association as well as former interns are available to prepare and answer questions before and during the overseas stay.
  • After completing the internship, an invitation will be made and the costs for travel and accommodation will be covered for an Agrecol e.V. meeting (in Germany or a neighbouring country), where the interns will present their experiences abroad.

Deadline: 29 Feb, 2024

More details here




Call for applications - YPARD Incuba Agribusiness Incubator Program (YPARD)

The project focuses on developing applied competencies through training and mentoring for the development of startups or ventures, or agricultural and livestock enterprises with an agroecological approach.

The incubation program, through its strengthening process for the design of agro-ecological design of agricultural and livestock ventures will provide seed capital of US$2,500 for the best proposal, in addition to other awards for teams with outstanding progress.

Location: Latin America and the Caribbean

Deadline: 15 March, 2024

More details here


 

Rising Star Agrifood Fellowships - University of Reading

The AgriFood 'Rising Star' Fellowship scheme is funded by the National Institute for Research Into Dairying (NIRD) Trust, which enables the university of Reading to invest into agriculture and food research.

The university will be looking to appoint at least two Fellows in 2023/24 with a minimum of a further two Fellowship appointments in 2024/25 and 2025/26. They are looking for individuals who can push the boundaries of their discipline, who are willing to build and lead interdisciplinary research teams, and who can demonstrate the potential to deliver ground-breaking research discoveries. The university will provide similar support packages to anyone seeking to base prestigious fellowships, such as those funded by the Royal Society, European Union or UKRI, at the University of Reading.

Each Fellow will be appointed on the Lecturer scale as a Research Intensive contract, initially for three years with the intention to extend for a further two years if probationary targets have been met. The expectation is then that the Fellow will transition to a permanent academic post in their home School.

Deadline: 18 Mar, 2024

More details here


 

IPA-Global Learning Coordinator - Agroecology Fund

The Agroecology Fund (AEF) is a multi-donor fund supporting agroecology movements worldwide. The Fund aims to support viable food systems, promote the economic and nutritional well-being and human rights of small farmers and Indigenous Peoples and their communities, strengthen biodiversity conservation, and mitigate climate change through low-input agriculture featuring sustainable soil and water use. 

The overall goal of the IPA-Global Learning Coordinator will be to support a global learning cohort to advance learning and research on advocacy for agroecology and climate.

Deadline: Rolling basis, to be hired by April

More details here


 

Learning Exchange Coordinator - Agroecology Fund

The Agroecology Fund (AEF) is a multi-donor fund supporting agroecology movements worldwide. The Fund aims to support viable food systems, promote the economic and nutritional well-being and human rights of small farmers and Indigenous Peoples and their communities, strengthen biodiversity conservation, and mitigate climate change through low-input agriculture featuring sustainable soil and water use. 

The overall goal of the Learning Exchange Coordinator will be to oversee the organization of three Agroecology Fund learning exchanges in 2024 and 2025.

Deadline: Rolling basis, to be hired by April

More details here





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The 10-day workshop on rural sustainable livelihood programs was the first of the Next Generation Institute and hosted by Iowa State University Uganda Program (ISU UP) encompassed both discussions sessions and field visits, providing a holistic understanding of initiatives aimed at fostering sustainable livelihoods in rural communities in Kamuli district. The workshop focused on the participants of knowledge and skills towards establishing a successful sustainable livelihood project.

The workshop commenced with comprehensive discussion sessions, covering topics ranging from the principles of sustainable livelihood programs to the socio-economic dynamics of rural communities. Facilitators who were the various project offer for the different project implemented by ISU UP led the discussions on the importance of empowering marginalized groups which includes teenage mothers, through skill development and entrepreneurship opportunities. The participants engaged in interactive learning activities, case studies, and group discussions to deepen their understanding of sustainable livelihood interventions.

Field visits were organized to engage directly with teenage mothers involved in sewing, hairdressing, and basket weaving enterprises. The participants had the opportunity to witness firsthand the impact of skill-building initiatives on these young women, gaining insights into their challenges, aspirations, and the transformative potential of economic empowerment. A visit to a local school implementing a school feeding program provided a nuanced understanding of the intersection between education, nutrition, and community development. Participants observed the logistics of the program, its impact on student attendance and academic performance, and the collaborative efforts involving community stakeholders.

The workshop included visits to schools with established farmer clubs, where students actively participated in agricultural activities. The engagement with students involved in farming initiatives highlighted the significance of practical agricultural education, promoting food security, and instilling a sense of environmental stewardship among the youth.

In conclusion, the 10-day workshop on rural sustainable livelihood programs provided a platform for immersive learning experiences, blending theoretical knowledge with real-world insights gleaned from field visits. The comprehensive understanding gained about the enterprises of teenage mothers, school feeding programs, and school farmer clubs equips participants with valuable perspectives to advocate for and contribute to sustainable livelihood interventions in rural communities.

Ivy Gloria Atieno
Local Representative, Busia County
YPARD KENYA

YPARD Cameroon training women farmers on agroforestry methods


Agroforestry is an excellent method to promote intercropping of diverse crops, both for cash and nutrition, while reducing pressures from pests and diseases. Agroforestry methods are frequently promoted by YPARD members as a tenant of agroecological production. This article provides three examples of YPARD Community Solutions Projects focusing on agroforestry in Africa.
 

YPARD Cameroon Community Solution Projects

Seed for Agriculture

Quality seeds are a cornerstone of crop yield. Seed for Agriculture project is a nursery which provides certified seedlings, but also training, to rural farmers for agroforestry practices. The project’s mission is to contribute to the production of quality seedlings and train young professionals in this strategic sector. The initiative was started by Bebel Nguepi, YPARD Cameroon Country Representative, four years ago. Mrs Edoa Celine, agroecologist, seed technologist, and YPARD Cameroon member is an expert trainer for the project.

The overall objective of the training is to capacitate women and young professionals from the Yaoundé VII district on citrus and plantain planting and propagation techniques, thereby improving the supply of quality seedlings in Cameroon. The project also aims to improve the productivity and competitiveness of farms by disseminating innovative techniques and technologies through research. It provides consultation to participating women and young professionals on the management and profitability of their farms. 

The Seed for Agriculture farm is also creating jobs for young people in Cameroon. The farm employs a general manager, a farm manager, and a maintenance engineer. It also employs part-time workers to monitor its seed production. 

 

Tree-planting with Children and Youth: Demonstrating the long-term effects of Green Regeneration

YPARD Cameroon’s tree planting project took place at Mfandena Public School in Yaoundé, Cameroon. The project was implemented with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies - IFRC, Young Volunteers for Environment Cameroon, Seed for Agriculture, and J2D-Afrique.

This initiative went beyond planting trees; the goal was to nurture a generation of environmental stewards. In collaboration with dedicated partners, YPARD Cameroon meticulously refined their approach, engaging in detailed planning, negotiations with schools, and mobilizing passionate volunteers. Their hands-on involvement extended from supplying seedlings and compost to actively participating in the tree-planting activity. 

55 fruit trees were planted in the school compound. While the trees themselves will grow to bring shade, oxygen, and fruits to the children and the local community, the communal activity of planting them together instilled a deep appreciation for trees among the children. 

 

YPARD Kenya Community Solution Project

Fruit Trees for Schools

YPARD Kenya is also passionate about the potential of agroforestry to allow intercropping perennial and annual crops mixed with the grazing of small livestock for diverse rural livelihoods. Therefore, in Busia and Kisumu Counties, YPARDians have been working with rural community schoolchildren to plant quality seedlings for mango, avocado and indigenous trees. At each of the Igero and Nyando Primary Schools, over 300 school children participated in the planting of 100 trees. The children were also trained on tree management, like how to water, fence, and protect their seedlings. 

These fruit trees have been planted on school grounds, but have also been provided to school children for planting at their homes. 

 

YPARD Ghana Community Solution Project

Beekeeping in Agroecological Systems

To create quality jobs for women and youth, YPARD Ghana is investing in improved rural-urban links within the food system. The chapter highlights the necessity of advancing agroforestry development methodologies, especially to create rural-to-urban linkages which are culturally, socially, and environmentally appropriate. With this in mind, YPARD Ghana launched for young beekeepers. The initiative was started in June 2023 in the Volta region of the Ho municipality with local bee species and has thus far trained 15 young entrepreneurs. This was done to support the government of Ghana's Green Agenda and to support ecotourism.

This initiative integrates the creation of inclusive market systems to ensure beekeeping results in income for young people living in rural areas. Through these efforts, YPARD Ghana seeks to preserve indigenous beekeeping knowledge by linking it with economic growth. In the same spirit, efforts are being made to enhance the ability of second-cycle and university students to better equip themselves as young entrepreneurs in response to Ghana's need for sustainable food security. In the future, the YPARD Ghana team plans to bring the training to other rural communities in Ghana. 

 

 

YPARD participated in the Consortium Europe-Africa on Research and Innovation for Food Systems Transformation (CEA-FIRST) Inception Meeting held at the Alisa Hotel, Tema Ghana from February 12th to 14th, 2024. This meeting comprised the High-Level Policy Dialogue on (HLPD) Food and Nutrition Security and Sustainable Agriculture (FNSSA) Working Group Meeting, the IRC Signatories Meeting, the 1st CEA-FIRST General Assembly and the 1st Steering Committee Meeting.

The 4-year project comes under the AU-EU Research and Innovation Cooperation as a follow-on Coordination Support Action to the LEAP4FNSSA that developed and launched the International Research Consortium (IRC). The IRC is intended to be the AU-EU (African Union- European Union) long-term platform to address the problem of fragmentation of research actions and in investments that has led to low impact of research outcomes.

About the IRC

The overall objective of the International Research Consortium (IRC) is to improve coordination and create synergy between the many Research and Innovation (R&I) programmes, initiatives, and actors with the aim of improving the FNSSA agenda in Africa and Europe.

The IRC is a member-based multi-actor platform working with an advocacy and outreach approach, and serves as a network of networks. It is set up as the "go-to" place for supporting initiatives, ensuring alignment with R&I FNSSA partners' strategies, preventing duplication and/or promoting complementarity with partners' initiatives.

The IRC will also serve other AU-EU policy priorities, such as the Climate Change and Sustainable Energy (CCSE) and the Innovation Agenda of the HLPD, as well as the European Green Deal priorities (and in particular the Farm-to-Fork Strategy) and the AU priorities like the African Free Trade Area.


YPARD’s involvement in the CEA-FIRST Project

From left to right: Hans-Jörg Lutzeyer (DG Research & Innovation European Commission), Genna Tesdall (Director, YPARD), Oyewole Oyekunle (IITA).


YPARD and West and Central African Council for Agricultural Research and Development (CORAF), supported by Council for Scientific and Industrial Research – Ghana (CSIR), Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA), Centre de coopération internationale en recherche agronomique pour le développement (CIRAD) are leading the development of the CEA-FIRST/ IRC Gender and youth specific strategies ensure the CEA-FIRST project and the IRC work are youth and gender-sensitive.

In this unique platform which brings together Africa and Europe through research, YPARD is  strategically positioned in the fight against the shared challenges that are caused by imbalances in the world– particularly those with the food and agricultural systems. We have the chance to emphasize the role of youth and gender in this work– through the strategy guiding meaningful youth and gender inclusion.

 

 Kofi Acquaye, YPARD Africa Regional Coordinator and Genna Tesdall, Director at the Inception meeting.



 

‘The CEA-FIRST project is funded by the European Union. The contents of this article are the sole responsibility of YPARD and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.’

 

 

 

 

With the process of urbanization, the majority of the population lives or will live in urban areas. Making full use of small areas (e.g., vacant plots, gardens, verges, balconies, containers) within the city for agricultural activities is beneficial to improve the adaptation and resilience of agrifood systems in response to climate change. In the context of current climate emergency, urban agriculture can contribute to the sustainable food systems transformation. Cultivating food plants in urban areas not only holds potential for alleviating pressure on food supply but also can release oxygen while removing carbon dioxide and storing it into the soil to achieve carbon sequestration.

YPARD China, Good Food Fund, La Fresque de l'Alimentation, Paris2050workshop in CN co-organized an urban agriculture training workshop with funding support from China Youth Climate Action Network to promote urban agriculture among young people. This workshop aimed to equip urban youth with practical knowledge on conducting agricultural activities and familiarize them with the importance of urban agriculture in mitigating climate change and building sustainable agrifood systems.

We hope that these urban agriculture practices undertaken by youth can strengthen community connectivity and generate collective values in the local communities through outdoor enjoyment, social empowerment, and food-environment experiences, propelling social movements and making transformative changes. All participants were equipped with knowledge of climate change, urban agriculture, ecosystems along with hands-on experience regarding agricultural operations within city limits.

Additionally, a portion of participants were provided with necessary seeds to initiate their own ventures into practicing urban farming. Following completion of this workshop session, one participant expressed significant improvement in his understanding of both climate change and urban agriculture.

 

The YPARD Global Cafe Series is an annual educational and networking series hosted by YPARD.

A YPARD Global Cafe is a virtual/hybrid space of experience sharing and knowledge exchange among young practitioners in the agriculture and food systems sector. Contrary to regular webinars, a YPARD Global cafe is meant for speakers, presenters, and participants to engage in dialogues and discussions. 

The goal of the Series is to open up a space for audiences to engage with ongoing agricultural projects, and have discussions with experts from other organizations on food systems and agricultural sustainability topics. The Series also covers technical sessions aimed to promote capacity building on different themes.

The cafes are hosted on 1.5 hour long Zoom meetings, once every month. We encourage participants to gather in groups in their local regions, and then join online so as to promote a hybrid experience of physical+virtual. 

YPARD members and expert speakers will be invited to share their knowledge and experience on a particular topic, followed by discussion with the attendees.

 

A YPARD Global Cafe webinar could cover different knowledge-sharing topics like

  • Spotlights on youth participation in events (for eg. experience at COP)

  • Regional focus on agrifood project management and collaboration with partners (for e. community organizing projects)

  • Technical information sessions (for eg. Policy building processes, How to write grant applications)

 

Past events in this series

1. Youth Insights post-COP28: questions, answers, and next steps | In collaboration with FAO, GLF, IFSA, Connect4Climate World Bank Group




This webinar showcased the experience of young professionals at the COP, discussed the key messages on food and agriculture highlighted in COP28 and debriefed on the next steps for the SSJW. It also covered the practical planning, skill development, and preparation needed for participating in global advocacy platforms like the COP


2. From the Ground Up: community organizing in practice | In collaboration with Acades, GLF, Sumak Kawsay, YIL 

 

This webinar underscored the pivotal role that cohesive groups can play in reshaping narratives, influencing policies at local and national levels, fostering community resilience, and beyond.

Experts and members from the YPARD community shared their experience in community organizing. Through real-world examples, they showcased the transformative power of collective action and provided practical insights for replicating these efforts in the audiences' own communities.

 


 


Please note: 
We will be issuing ‘YPARD Knowledge Certification: Leadership and Project Management’ Certificates to all participants who attend at least 9 out of the 12 webinars held throughout this year. 
 

If you are interested to take part in one of our global cafes, either as a YPARD member or a YPARD Partner, please reach out to our Communications Coordinator Trisha Mandal at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We would love to get your input about topics or projects you want us to cover!