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CAMEROON: Youth Development Program in the Agricultural Sector

Local Partner: CNEFAC – Cameroonian National Network of Family-centered Agricultural Training Schools for Social Advancement
Year: 2011

Half the population in Cameroon lives off agriculture, a sector with enormous potential that has widely gone unexplored so far. Agriculture could offer secure jobs for young people who, lacking other alternatives, are instead forced to emigrate to the cities with the risk of becoming marginalized. Young people lack quality training courses and are poorly equipped for work in the fields. In light of this problem, families are increasingly becoming more aware of their need to actively participate in the education of their children. In the early 1990s, this need gave rise to the EFAs: Family-centered Agricultural Training School networks.

In general, the project aimed at easing the integration of young workers into the agricultural sector by improving training programs in line with the “alternation method” of the Family-centered Agricultural Training Schools (EFAs). This method “alternates” in-class theoretical sessions with “on-hands” practice in agricultural companies and calls for the parents’ active participation in deciding on and designing the “theory” and “practice” parts of the programs. The initiative was conceived to improve training programs for 240 parents in 6 different EFAs in order to make them better able to follow their children’s studies during the “alternation period”, technically, practically and morally-speaking. At the same time, the project allowed for the creation of 6 experimental fields to be practiced on. Revenues from the sales of products cultivated in the fields will contribute to the continuous self-financing of the chosen EFA networks. This initiative involved 10 regions in Cameroon, with special focus on the three provinces in the Grand North – Adamaoua, the North and the Extreme North.

240 families in 6 different Agricultural Training Schools;
2,000 young people between the ages of 13-19;
Approx. 14,000 people in the selected areas will indirectly benefit from the program’s activities.

The project has been carried out in a timely manner and staying within the approved budget. All proposed activities should be completed by the end of January 2012. More details and images to come.