Giving Compass' Take:

• Food Tank profiles the West Africa Agricultural Productivity Program (WAAPP), which helps African youth get involved with farming and find pathways to employment.

• How can donors fund more programs that connect young people with agricultural systems? What is the potential for scale?

• Read more about the importance of investing in African youth and development.

The West and Central African Council for Agricultural Research and Development (CORAF) is providing education sponsorships, technology training, and mentorship for youth in agriculture, research, and entrepreneurship. CORAF’s programs for youth prepare for the quickly aging population of researchers in agriculture.

In West Africa, 63 percent of the population is under 25 years old. According to CORAF, this group also makes up 60 percent of the total unemployed. Yet CORAF sees youth unemployment as a great opportunity for agriculture, especially if youth feel empowered to become the engine for economic development. “We have a lot of youth with no access to jobs,” says Dr. Nieyidoube Lamien, Program Officer for CORAF’s West Africa Agricultural Productivity Program (WAAPP). “We found that agriculture is one of the sectors that can really accept them.”

Read the full article on training African youth in agriculture by Katherine Walla at Food Tank.