By George Munene
International development charity Practical Action is commencing a five-year project that aims to increase income and create job opportunities for 100,000 18-35-year-olds within Kenya’s agricultural sector.
The project, Resilient Agriculture that works for youth (RAY) Project, will look to effect systematic change within the agriculture sector to make this an attractive work sector that offers dignified work. It will be implemented in Kisumu, Homabay, Siaya, Migori, Nyamira, Kakamega, Bungoma, Busia, and Vihiga Counties.
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Its key aims are:
i). Improving knowledge and skills for 100,000 young men and women will lead to change in practice through the adoption of Regenerative Agriculture (RA) technologies and improved business management practices.
ii). To improve resource flows by facilitating 85 per cent of the targeted youth access to appropriate and affordable financial products and services from Youth Savings and Loan Associations (YSLAs) and Financial Service Providers (FSPs) to enable them to establish/grow their agri enterprises.
iii). Further, enhance access to land and equipment for young men and women by strengthening land lease processes and facilitating business linkages between young people and equipment suppliers.
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iv). To increase access to markets for young men and women through strengthening relationships and connections and developing commercial offtake/aggregation models to enable youth-led agri enterprises to thrive.
v). To alter negative perceptions of young women in agriculture to enable community and market actors to actively encourage and endorse young women’s participation in agribusiness.