Sustainable and Inclusive Food-Systems Agents (SIFA) Youth Consultative Meeting

Africa is experiencing extreme cases of food insecurity, as well as extreme weather events such as drought and flooding. Extreme weather is a result of climate change. This exacerbates food insecurity through reduced yields. Different groups of people are being impacted differently by climate change and food insecurity, with some groups bearing a greater burden. Therefore, it is important to deliberately and meaningfully include all groups of people in climate and agriculture actions. Often, the youth are included in these actions based on their vulnerability. However, the inclusion should not only be based on vulnerability but also on the youth’s potential to be great change-makers. With this goal in mind, we hosted a youth consultative meeting on the Sustainable and Inclusive Food-Systems Agents (SIFA) project in Nairobi, on 29th June 2023.

SIFA is a Swahili word meaning praise. The project focuses on the agents of change in sustainable and inclusive food systems, who are often excluded, and when included, it is based more on their vulnerability. These are men and women, boys and girls who, when meaningfully engaged, can be great agents of change. In this project, we are targeting the youth in universities and colleges, students in secondary schools, and women in informal settlements and rural areas.

The meeting was attended by youth from various universities, colleges, and regions. Our discussion focused on the work of Africa CSID on climate and the food system, as well as the role of youth in and beyond the project. During the meeting, the youth shared their various engagements in food systems, from production, distribution to consumption. The youth agreed that every human being is an important stakeholder in food systems therefore we all have a role to play in enhancing climate resilience and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The youth are already playing a significant role in the food system, we must work with them if we want to achieve sustainability. We look forward to more engagements like this.

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