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Seven reasons why we support young farmers in Kenya

15 November 2017

Seven reasons why we support young farmers in Kenya

Here at Farm Africa, every day we have the pleasure of working with young Kenyan farmers. Since 2011, Farm Africa’s Growing Futures project has supported 2,700 young farmers in Trans-Nzoia county to build profitable agri-businesses. The project unlocks young farmers’ potential to increase their yields and profits. We’re now running the Growing Futures appeal to help another 2,000 young farmers in the county of Elgeyo Marakwet, here’s why:

1. The median age of a farmer in Kenya is 61, one year older than the recommended retirement age of Kenyan civil servants. Cultivating a new generation of Kenyan farmers is vital to plugging this looming skills gap and strengthening Kenya’s economy.

2. Conversely, the median age of Kenya’s population is just 18. Every year one million young people join the Kenyan workforce. Whether this bulge will ultimately spell boom or bust will depend largely on whether young people can forge viable careers in the country’s biggest industry: agriculture.

3. Investing in agriculture is more effective than any other sector at reducing poverty.

4. In the future young farmers will be on the frontline of climate change. Kenya’s future farmers will have to dig deep to prepare for a changing, more volatile climate –preparations must start now!

5. Economically empowering young farmers improves the health and wellbeing of the families they support.

6. Young farmers bring fresh eyes, ideas and ambition to farming; combining their entrepreneurial spirit with tailored farming and business support can help to breathe life into fragile rural economies.

7. No farmers, no food, no future. It's simple, but true. Helping young farmers make a success of agriculture is vital to feeding a growing population.