Rural Youth Poverty Reduction
What is the Project About?
The Rural Youth Poverty Reduction Project will contribute to the reduction of rural youth unemployment by increasing the ability of youths to access sustainable livelihood options. This will be achieved throug h the capacitating of rural youth through the provision of skills training and increased access to post harvest production fac ilities to improve the agriculture value added. Both in school and unattached youths will be targeted though primary focus will be given to youths out of school. The aim is to increase the number of youths in the targeted communities who are actively employed or earning a living directly or indirectly through agriculture. In addition youths will have the necessary skills to identify and access opportunities for engaging in other businesses along the agricu lture value chain. The project will attempt to mostly work through established community groups but is also open to youths not currently involved in such groups . The project should enhance current efforts to strengthen the linkages between the agriculture and tourism sectors and the servicing of underserved niche markets.
What We Have Accomplished So Far
- Working in the most vulnerable areas: The project serves neglected communities in four parishes: Trelawny, St. Ann, Manchester and St. Thomas.
- Boosting the value of agricultural output in the selected parishes whilst strengthening the capabilities of rural youth many of whom are unemployed or underemployed:The project targets both in-school youths through support to the 4-H clubs and unattached youths (particularly males), to improve their quality of life, reducing anti-social behaviour and providing new skills, employment and livelihood options. There will be three target levels of entry for beneficiaries- Beginners, Intermediate and Advanced, depending on their existing skill and educational levels.
- Teaching transferable skills: (a) Literacy and numeracy; basic life and leadership skills; basic accounting and business management; entrepreneurship and customer service. (b) Production of raw materials (such as herbs, spices, tubers and other crops for hotels and restaurants for example) as well as ornamentals. (c) Production of food and non-food products from local raw materials (for example lemongrass). (d) Product development, product improvement and marketing including packaging and labelling; the application of food technology to develop specialty products for the health industry; good manufacturing practices; and cleaner production technologies.
- Improving infrastructure through upgrading one small-scale processing facility in each parish.These refurbished facilities will be equipped with inter alia vacuum-packaging and labelling equipment; top-loading balances and platform scales; slicer/dicer; deep-fat fryer etc which aid in production of new products.