Today, Thursday 12th August, is International Youth Day.
Kenya is a very young country so this is especially relevant for us; did you know that an astonishing 42% of Kenya’s population is under-15?! Kenya’s future depends on having the right employment opportunities and growth sectors for these young folk to contribute to. For Shamba Shape Up‘s part, we like to showcase that farming should not be seen as “old man’s work” but rather, when done right, can be an opportunity for a thriving, sustainable agri-business. Definitely a sector that young people should consider!
In our first series, we met Jeremiah, a young farmer from Kikuyu who inherited his shamba from his grandfather at age 26. A keen farming entrepreneur, Jeremiah was trying his hand at tomatoes and livestock. Several years later he has a young family and now speaks about the value of farming to local schools, alongside his farming work.
Another youth farmer who made a particular impact on our viewers was Kioko. Kioko had been working on his shamba since he had left school 11 years prior. He had made such a success of the shamba that he inspired his brother to quit his low paying mechanical job in Nairobi and join him!
Another example who can hardly be forgotten is our Series 4 competition winner, Eric! Eric entered the Shamba Shape Up Facebook competition to win a shape up for his family farm in Naro Moru. Eric was studying at university at the time, but helped his father out on the shamba and aspired to take it over once he had completed his education.
Eric was a great example of how the youth can bring modern ideas, such as online research, computer business management tools and the benefit of crowd sourcing answers to their farming problems via social media sites like Twitter, Instagram or blogs, which can all help to improve the productivity of a family’s shamba.
We hope you will join us on Twitter and Facebook to celebrate Kenya’s youth, #YouthDay and help spread the word that #farmingiscool!