Agriculture can solve the problem of youth unemployment
Youth unemployment is one of the most acute problems affecting developing countries Kenya included. A lack of basic education ranks high among the reasons for this problem. However, youth unemployment is compounded by the fact that a large portion of the population in developing countries tends to be youth.
The formal economy is unable to create enough employment opportunities to absorb this constant supply of labour-seeking youth. Most youth finish their studies and go to towns in search of jobs and it takes most of them them an average of 2-3 years to get a Job which pays Ksh. 40,ooo a Month. This 3 years is a time which goes into waste and the graduates should have used this time to venture into agriculture and make more money . Its is a fact that agriculture has a potential to lift a lot of people out of poverty by creating Jobs in the Agriculture sector and boosting food security in our nation thus freeing the resources used to import food to be used in other development projects, This will hasten the achievement of Kenya’s Vision 2030 as they say- “A well-fed nation is a free nation”
From my observation youth participation in the agricultural sector is very low, largely because the sector is highly unattractive – due to risks, costs, inefficiency and its labour-intensive nature. Motivating the youth to view agriculture as a career opportunity will require a a lot of l intervention from all sectors. The Government and the stake holders should come up with realistic strategies to attract gadget-loving and efficiency-prone young people into the agricultural sector
In the first instance, those within the school system must be targeted. There are various ways the youth can venture into agribusiness, one being integration of ICT in agriculture I want to highlight the case of MFarm Kenya a software solution and agribusiness company based in Nairobi who are doing a wonderful job of connecting farmers with the market and also providing advice on best farming practices. Some of the services they offer are:
- Enable farmers to inquire current market prices of different crops from different regions and/or specific markets.
- Aggregate farmers needs/orders and connect them with farm input suppliers.
- Enable farmers to sell collectively and connect them with a ready market.