African Youth Consultative Pastoralists’ Workshop Held at Lukenya University

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On 27-29 September 2022 Lukenya University hosted the first Consultative African Youth Pastoralists’ Workshop that had participants from Ethiopia, Tanzania and Kenya; the secretariat from Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya and Cameroon; and workshop experts from Procasur. The workshop costing 24,400 USD was funded by ILRI, IFAD and FAO. The youths shared their experiences, challenges and strategies to overcome the challenges. They visited Ivooni Joy Farm, a  local successful farm on September 28, 2022 where they learned about embracing mixed farming, water harvesting, farm technologies, animal health, rangeland management, fodder preservation and income generation  from farming among others. Another success story was narrated to them by Mr. Pascal Kyule from the locality. The youth pastoralists interacted with an expert from the Makueni County Government Directorate of Livestock, Mr. James Ogago,  the Youth Lead in Makueni County in Agribusiness, Mr. Justus Mwakavi; and from Lukenya University experts.  On 29th September 2022, a declaration was made that would be shared in the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) at Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt on 6-18 November 2022.

Some lessons from the workshop include:

  1. Maximizing rain water harvesting;
  2. Developing a framework of climate change mitigation and mainstreaming in our institutions;
  3. Insurance for animals and other farm produce;
  4. Adoption of climate smart technologies;
  5. Improving financial linkages;
  6. Redefining who a pastoralist is;
  7. Challenges faced by pastoralists-do they apply to all rangelands? Are the solutions applicable to all agro-ecological zones?
  8. Land tenure and use is not similar in our areas- in Tanzania land is communal;
  9. Incorporation of technologies to solve the pastoralists’ problems;
  10. Changing the mindset of the people in the community to deliver solutions;
  11. Engage County Governments;
  12. Learning some sustainable solutions;
  13. Manage the number of animals kept- to manage disaster;
  14. Manure, hay and others for economic value e.g. use in own farm and for sale;
  15. Mixed farming as an option for pastoralists;
  16. Providing employment through pastoralism- we can improve the Community;

The African Youth Pastoralists’ Initiative (AYPI) was formed following the workshop. The role of AYPI is to rally the pastoralist youths for concerted efforts in addressing the pastoralists’ challenges in Africa

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