In celebration of International Girls in ICT Day on the 24th April, encouraging the interests and strengths of young girls and women in Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs), the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation drawn attention to 15 young women from developing countries who are fantastic role models.
At the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), youth are considered as a key stakeholder and cross-cutting issue, and the new CTA Youth Strategy calls for the need to address specifically young women as part of the centre’s youth activities.
On the occasion of the International Girls in ICT Day, we would like to recognise the women finalists and some female participants of the Youth in Agriculture Blog Competition (YoBloCo Awards), for their efforts and contribution in raising the youth voice in agriculture through their blogs. Even if they are not ICT specialists, they see these technologies as effective tools that can enhance agricultural development and strengthen food security in ACP countries. The YoBloCo Awards have been encouraging them to improve their ICT abilities and harness them for the promotion of economic development in their communities.
We believe that these young ladies from different ACP regions and countries are making a difference in their society and we are pleased to share their aspirations, experiences, and stories..
Patrina Pink, Jamaica
Patrina hails from the coastal city of Portmore, Jamaica. She has worked in journalism, strategic and development communications and civil society research. She recently completed a Master's degree in Human Development and Food Security in Rome, Italy. Patrina’s blog is a platform discussing challenges, constraints and celebrating the successes and solutions in the global fight for Food Security. Topics include: Food Security Policies, Development Communications, Livelihoods Analysis, Participatory Tools and Methodologies, Territorial Development Planning, Gender and Food Security.
Blog URL: http://foodsecurefutures.wordpress.com/
Nadia Pacquette Anselm, Dominica
Nadia is an avid and passionate youth with a keen interest in Agricultural development specifically within the Caribbean Region and developing countries. She holds a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Degree, a Masters degree in food safety and she is now pursuing a masters degree in Project Management. Nadia’s blog “Island Agriculture” aims to highlight issues, successes and challenges facing youth and women agri-entrepreneurs from the perspective of an islander. It brings forth new developments surfacing in Agriculture in Dominica and other islands within the Caribbean with a view of providing valuable information to garner the sustainability of young entrepreneurs in modern day Agriculture.
Blog URL: http://islandagriculture.blogspot.com/
Enricka Julien, Trinidad and Tobago
Enricka is an agribusiness graduate with experience in the areas of land management, social media, and events planning. She’s currently sharpening her skills in Information and Communication Technology with the aims of utilising it to develop the local agriculture industry. Small scale farmers play an important role in global food production. Her blog “Ebites1” seeks to bring awareness to the global community about the challenges National smallholder farmers face. Enricka truly believes that one of the best ways to create change in the agriculture sector is to increase discussions on this topic. This will create an active flow of knowledge, information and technology for the betterment of all humanity.
Blog URL: http://ebites1.wordpress.com
Anne Matho Motsou, Cameroon
An agricultural journalist by profession, Anne aims to bring forward news related to agriculture from Cameroon and Africa as a whole by giving a voice to specialists in this area. In her blog "Les graines de l’info", Anne highlights various issues, including crop/livestock production, agribusiness, entrepreneurship, youth in agriculture. In her articles, Anne shares results of Agricultural research in a simple language that can be understood by farmers and also encourages youth to get involved in agriculture by highlighting the opportunities related to entrepreneurship and agribusiness. Anne was also among the best finalists in the first edition of the YoBloCo Awards.
Blog URL: http://grainesdinfo.wordpress.com
Joan Apio, Uganda
Joan is a young African woman who is passionate about the possibilities created by emerging ICTs for Change in Africa. She believes that with the use of ICTs, it is possible to make a difference in agriculture and to create sustainable impact in Africa. Her blog is aimed at showcasing the experiences and opportunities for youth and researchers in the field of ICT for Agriculture. Her blog is a platform is to encourage youth to think smart and use technologies to tap into opportunities that Agriculture has to offer.
Blog URL: http://www.cit4agriculture.com/
Haingo Rasolofomanana, Madagascar
Haingo is a sociologist, specialising in qualitative research. She passionate about web 2.0 and engaged in agriculture, especially family farming, ecovillage, permaculture and organic farming. She decided to create her blog to share with the public, especially young women and young men, the results of surveys that she has conducted, including the perception of young people in agriculture. Her blog is also a platform for exchange for youth. Her goal is to introduce agriculture as a promising and rewarding sector for youth.
Blog URL: http://lodeurdelaterre.wordpress.com/
Malala Onisoa Rakotojaofeno, Madagascar
Malala is doing her PhD in Development Economics and Environment at the University of Antananarivo (Madagascar). Her thesis is on the inclusion of environmental measures in the Malagasy agricultural system. Malala is also the Coordinator of Youth and Agriculture in Madagascar (www.jeuneagrimadagascar.org) and teaches macro-economics at the University of Antananarivo. Her blog was created to share with the international audience, the contribution and effects of agriculture to climate change. The objective is to show a new facet of agriculture with youth and women using ICTs for development of the sector.
Blog URL: http://agri-climatmadagascar.blogspot.com
Elcah Nafula Barasa, Kenya
Elcah is currently pursuing a degree in International Relations, after having graduated with a diploma in Aeronautical Engineering in 2013. She loves gardening and nature - something she fondly attributes to her granny who introduced her to gardening when she was young. When not in school and not working, Elcah likes spending time on the internet which she says is a great source of information for her. Elcah also likes swimming, nature watching and photography. Her blog is a treasure trove of her personal beliefs, endeavors, and hustles as a Kenyan youth. She shares about agriculture as an alternative source of employment to the youth, the plight of young people and application of ICTs in development.
Blog URL: http://elcah.wordpress.com/
Lalaina Nirina Rakotoarisoa, Madagascar
Lalaina’s blog relates how ICT can promote agriculture in some practical examples relating to the activities of young people involved in agriculture in Madagascar. The aim is to encourage the use of new Information and Communication Technologies by farmers, especially the youth; and improve their engagement in agriculture, especially in rural areas of Madagascar.
Blog URL: http://www.agriculture-madagascar.net/ict4dev
Sandra Chao, Kenya
Sandra is a journalist with the Business Daily in Nairobi Kenya and she is passionate about writing human interest pieces which are among the great highlights of the last three years of her work. SmattaKenya is a platform she uses to tell stories about Agriculture and youth in Kenya and Africa through her eyes.
Blog URL: http://smattakenya.blogspot.com/
Emmie Kio, Kenya
An Agribusiness Management graduate from Egerton University, Emmie works as a program assistant in Outreach and Social Media at Kenya Feed the Future Innovation Engine, a USAID funded program being implemented by Land O' Lakes Inc. Her blog “Tracking the Agricultural Scent” emanated from her job search after graduating from college in 2011. She thought of being a job creator instead of a job seeker, and set out to learn about the basic agricultural practices unemployed youths could involve themselves in and still earn a decent income. This saw her delve in to how Information, Communication and Technology can be used to improve the status and mindset of Agriculture amongst the youths. Her blog reports on Agriculture, Agribusiness, Sustainable Rural Development, Youth Agri-prenuership, Food Security, Agricultural Policies and Social Media. Emmie’s blog has also been winner of the 2012 BAKE (Bloggers Association of Kenya) Awards in the “Best agriculture Blog” category.
Blog URL: http://emmiekio.blogspot.com/
Salele Elenoa, Fiji
Elenoa is a graduate from the University of the South Pacific (U.S.P), Alafua Campus, Samoa. She majored in Animal Science, Crop Science and Agriculture Economics. She is focusing into climate change and the veterinary field for future studies. Elenoa tries and encourages the youth of today, especially in the Pacific, to practice agriculture. Her blog is a means for her to share her work in agriculture.
Blog URL: http://elenoasaleles.blogspot.com/
Carole Cholai, Papua New Guinea
Carole graduated with a Bachelor Degree in Computer Science in 2004. Her greater interests have been shifted from the full-time Network Administrator or IT officer to a freelance mode - assisting rural Papua New Guineans to know and understand and fully utilise the Internet and Computer Technology to add value to their personal and professional lives. Carole’s blog focuses on Women in ICT and Agriculture in Papua New Guinea. Stories of youth, empowerment and community development are also included.
Blog URL: http://agriculture.caitservicespng.com
Marthe Montcho, Benin
Marthe holds a PhD in Agricultural Sciences, and also studies social sciences, for which she is currently preparing her thesis on "Participation of women in agricultural and rural development in Benin". She has great interest in issues relating to gender and agricultural development. Her blog is part of the vision to know the issues related to women farmers in Benin, the development and promotion of rural women, entrepreneurial and creative women leaders in rural areas for agricultural and rural development in Benin.
Blog URL: http://agricultureaufeminin.wordpress.com/
Kofo Durosinmi-Etti, Nigeria
Prior to 2013, Kofo spent approximately 6 years working in the Technology and Banking sector. Then she woke up one morning and decided that she wants to be a farmer! Actually it really did not happen just like that… She did some research on what area of development and business she wanted to go into and decided that Agriculture was it. She is a management accountant aspiring to become one of the so called next generation of African farmers. Kofo’s blog aims to rebrand agriculture and present another face of an African farmer. It seeks to tell the story of a young farmer with limited experience in the agric space, and to encourage young people to begin looking at agriculture as a potential career path. The content discusses her entrepreneurial journey and her business perspective.
Blog URL: http://nextgenafricanfarmers.com/
The different profiles and contribution of these 15 young women in ICT for Agriculture provide evidence that, indeed, from crop/livestock production through agribusiness, agricultural research and extension, training and capacity building, entrepreneurship, veterinary science and agricultural journalism, there are different opportunities for youth in agriculture. And using ICTs, young women are playing an essential and active role in agricultural and rural development in ACP countries. Happy Girls in ICT Day!
The YoBloCo Awards are organised in the framework of the ARDYIS Project of CTA, which aims to raise youth awareness and capacity on agricultural and rural development issues in ACP countries through ICTs.
In the context of the International Girls in ICT Day, CTA in collaboration with the African Youth Foundation (AYF) is also organising an e-debate on the theme “Enhancing Young Women’s engagement in ICT and Agriculture” from 16th April - 7th May 2014.
Read more about the event here.