In preparation for the kick-off of the ENABLE Youth Program in DR Congo, a delegation from the Ministry of Agriculture in DR Congo on Tuesday, January 17 visited the IITA Youth Agripreneurs office in Ibadan Nigeria to understudy the IYA model.
The team comprises of Dr Mpoko Bokanga from AfDB, Mr Luvuangu Mampuya, the Director Ministry of Agriculture and Dr Nzola-Meso Mahungu, the country Representative of IITA in DR Congo.
After listening to a brief presentation on the success stories of IYA, Mr Luvuangu stated that he was delighted with what IITA has done in helping Sub-Saharan countries tackle the issue of youth unemployment. According to him, DR Congo has tried in so many ways to tackle the issue through different entrepreneurial skills but it was discovered that many youth prefer the white collar job to being independently engaged because of lack of resources.
He however expressed optimism that with the ENABLE Youth Program, the youth would embrace agriculture because there will be resources, trainings and needed support to help them when the need arises. He added that it is essential to change the orientation of the youth towards agriculture.
He said the experience of one of the Agripreneurs- Bose Idowu is worth emulating stating that youth can write business plans and also venture into business of their choice while still undergoing training at the incubation center.
Bose Idowu is one of the pioneer members of IYA member who has started her business from her savings and support from IITA. She is into planting and processing of cowpea into cowpea flour which can be used for beans cake.
The delegates also visited Niji farms, the BIP and other facilities in IITA.